I’ve spoken once to one of my peer colleagues, and we’ve both complained on certain aspects how “organization” was doing the things. We were partly correct in everything and about similarly wrong, as well. He said in the end: “Well, I am not married to this company, so I have no problem to just leave”.He was maybe correct, but he didn’t leave. We are partners with our organization and as long as the partnership is satisfactory for both parties, we engage together.
After the talk, I felt guilty. Our chat added no value and time we spent was fairly wasted on complaints.
What is the organization? Who forms it and what makes it as it is? Who creates the culture and behaviors in it?
Even the organizational policies and mottos would say that people are our best assets, we usually don’t identify with such words, since there are so many signs and signals saying that the numbers are important – budget, headcount, charts, reports… We live/work in the organization of things.
This is how Al Michaud in his book “Mediocrity in ten easy steps” sarcastically explains forces that drag business and organizations towards mediocrity. The very few managers, according to Al, take the time and make the effort to talk with and truly understand people. Those who do this are marked as people persons and they are not best conducting themselves in the best manner to insure mediocrity.
Mediocrity doesn’t count today. Mediocre companies are sentenced to extinction.
Agile organizations are people-oriented. They fight mediocrity with collaboration and cultivation of people’s growth (please check the Empirical People Control post). They make people meaningful and work in the organization purposeful. Mediocrity hates those things.
Respecting and appreciating people, we love, respect and appreciate our organization. The good numbers, budgets, charts, and reports produced by these people are the consequence of this “love”.
All the policies, rules and processes are useful and meaningful if used to grow people’s knowledge, capabilities and motivation. As leaders,we make processes useful and we need to make sure that we improve them constantly. This challenge of improvement makes our organization agile i.e. it is our ticket out of mediocrity.
Mediocrity is a bad word, bad word!