Tim Morris is Professor of Management Studies at Saïd Business School. Tim’s research and teaching activities focus on leadership and on the growing and increasingly important field of professional service firms (PSFs) in which he is acknowledged as a leading international expert. Tim has published extensively in leading international journals including Academy of Management Journal, Journal of Management Studies and Organization Studies. He has authored numerous chapters in collected editions, particularly on innovation and change in professional service firms. His recent work concerns the effects of power on change, relationships between career systems and innovation capacity, patterns of organisational design and processes of developing competitive advantage in professional service firms. Before taking up his chair at Oxford in 2002, Tim was a Professor at Imperial College, London, and at London Business School. He has a BA in Social and Political Science from Cambridge University and an MSc and PhD from the London School of Economics.
Abstract: In this seminar we will discuss how changes to the career model in professional service firms, such as law, accounting and consulting, creates the potential for change in the origins and degree of innovation in these firms. The context is that these firms have traditionally used an up-or-out promotion system which underpins a broader organisational model, and this model defines how work gets done and where innovation occurs. Recent changes to the promotion system impact on career options and on the organisational model. In turn, these trigger the potential for innovation to occur in new and different ways which were not anticipated by the architects of change. The relationship between organisational change and innovation has implications for a wider set of organisations which are principally dependent on their core professionals for innovatory activities.