During September we had a mini-poll as to how readers would characterize the senior executives of their organizations.
Only 26 people responded, so this can't be considered very definitive, however, of those that responded, 12% said that their senior executives “understand the process perspective and are supportive of process change initiatives.” At the opposite extreme, 4% said his or her executive didn't understand and wasn't supportive. I actually think this is quite positive — I might have expected more respondents to be unhappy with executives.
As it is, 42% said that their executives “do not understand the process perspective and only occasionally support a process initiative. Another 42% said that some of their executives “support process change initiatives, but don't really understand the process perspective.
However you evaluate these results, they suggest that executives need to be better educated about processes if organizations are to make much progress. In some cases people working at an organization can contribute. They can complete process projects and then publicize the results. In other cases, it will fall to business schools and the press to nudge business executives to a better understanding of the importance of the process perspective.