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Elliott Jaques (Canada, 1917)

Jaques heeft veel onderzoek verricht op het gebied van bedrijfssociologie en management. Geroemd wordt zijn onderzoek naar de psychologische en sociale factoren van het groepsgedrag. Hij is nu buitengewoon-hoogleraar in Washington.

Human Capability:
A Study of Individual Potential and Its Application

Elliot Jaques is a British sociologist who has spent over 30 years researching time and how what a person thinks about time effects their job competence. In his book Levels of Abstraction in Logic and Human Action, he identifies seven "time horizons" and how they fit with traditional business job descriptions. (A "time horizon" is the maximum time span a person can comfortably work with.

His findings were as follows:

Time Horizon

Job Description

1. Three Months or less

Shop floor personnel

2. Up to a year

Section head

3. Up to two years

Group head

4. Up to five years

General manager

5. Up to ten years

Subsidiary head

6. Up to twenty years

Group head

7. Up to fifty years and beyond


The most dramatic finding in Jaques studies was that people who could sustain a time horizon of ten years or more were the "rule makers" for all those in levels 1-4. By encouraging their brains to tolerate ambiguity and establish their own criteria and vision for living, that vision was often taken up by all those with shorter time horizons and lower tolerance for chaos and the unknown.  








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