Trust connotes many things. In one sense it speaks to the history we’ve had with other people when we say things like my experience shows he/she can be trusted. In another it reflects aspirations about one’s self in statements like I trust that I’d do the right thing if faced with that situation. An in yet another we often hear people say I trust things will workout for the better.
Though trust is related to notions of reliability, confidence, belief, faith and hope or expectation underlying these is the role trust plays in human development. It speaks to our need to counter balance an ever-present characteristic of our world, uncertainty. Consequently trust is the means of bringing a sense of order to an uncertain environment. Accordingly, when we are in an environment absent of trust, one wherein mistrust abounds, increasingly dis-ease overcomes us. Why is this so? Continue reading
Each of us as a person is a constituent of society and its governance and economic systems, as well as of the larger system of humankind. That is to say, we are living systems collectively constituting a deeply interconnected hierarchy of semi-autonomous whole-parts in mutual relation. Thus our actions and interactions in these systems—as individuals, groups and organizations—are of utmost importance to the viability of these systems. Continue reading
“Thinking systemically also requires several shifts in perception, which lead in turn to different ways to teach and different ways to organize society” –Russell Ackoff
As living beings we each present with a physical body comprised of cells, tissue, organs and organ-systems structurally and functionally organized to support (our) life. The natural order of things is a hierarchy of constituent entities that are themselves living systems. So the issue is not whether everything is reducible to individual entities—the atomistic view—or everything is a whole—the holistic view—but rather that neither view is the absolute view. As Arthur Koestler (The Ghost in The Machine) noted “parts and wholes in a absolute sense do not exist in the domain of life.” What we have are semi-autonomous systems that are each a part of larger higher order systems. Koestler called these ‘whole-parts’ holons—wholes that are parts of other wholes—and the hierarchy they constitute a holarchy. Continue reading
Richard Boyatzis of Case Western Reserve, in HRB Blog Network, spoke to the need for teams to have what he calls resonant leaders. Richard states such leaders “are able to build trusting, engaged and energizing relationships with others around them” and as a result the team is able to “adapt, innovate and sustain performance. “ But what makes one able to do this? Continue reading
There seems to be a growing acceptance of the notion that we each are free independent individuals and as a consequence we not only can, but also should, order life in society accordingly.
Being free independent individuals necessarily means people can freely do as they please or more specifically that they should do as they wish for their own pleasure—(my) life is all about me getting what’s mine without interference. Apart from being unencumbered in seeking what we want, this belief also implies there is no obligation that an individual has to other individuals, because such obligation would be tantamount to an imposition (by another) upon one’s freedom to act as he/she desires. Continue reading
A leader is one who others have chosen to follow. So because leaders require followers, it is imperative that the leader be a person of utmost integrity. Knowing who you are and what you stand for and embodying this in your way-of-being is paramount. Moreover integrity is the antecedent to trustworthiness. Why is this important? Who among us would decide to follow another who wasn’t worthy of our trust! Continue reading
Robert Galford’s HBR Blog Network article, “How to keep your cool during a performance review” suggest there is a widespread abhorrence and likely fear of the annual performance review. To make what is often a not-so-good experience better Robert offers four tactics: relax; prepare yourself to hear one or more unexpected ‘somethings’; if you don’t agree with the feedback, don’t launch into a defense right away; and when it is over, say thank you, reflect on the overall message and don’t file it and forget it. While these are no doubt helpful toward making lemonade out of a lemon, they don’t mitigate the overall effect of the annual performance appraisal process. Continue reading
In a Forbes.com article Eric Jackson presented the following top ten reasons why large companies fail to keep their best talent. Continue reading
The fact that Wall Street and other corporate executives are not only allowed but helped in gaining so much from the general public while they generally thumb their nose at the general public is not the problem, though it is symptomatic of a serious problem. The fact that more and more people continue to lose so much ground is not the problem, though it is symptomatic of a serious problem. The fact that our elected officials (the representatives of the people of society) are not just emissaries but employees of those contributing vast amounts of money to their livelihood is not the problem, though it is symptomatic of a serious problem. I could go on almost endlessly, but the point is that these are just effects of our problem. Continue reading
In a New York Times Corner Office interview Kathleen Flanagan, President/CEO of Abt Associates, recalled her first meeting with management as the new 29-year old leader of a business unit of Abt. Continue reading