Here is our new framework for considering how things really seem to work in most organizations, this one done as a paradoxical joke that might take a second. It is also something for consideration about the perception of reality:
Here are two of my most useful quotes:
Nothing made sense, and neither did everything else.
(Joseph Heller, from his book “Closing Time,“ (1994) )
It is not possible to awaken someone who is pretending to be asleep.
Caterpillars can fly, if they just lighten up. Thus, be the caterpillar or the butterfly, but always watch out for the birds and expect changes because we go through cycles of existence.
If you can’t be kind to others, at least have the decency to be vague.
Indecision is a key to flexibility.
A decision made is an opportunity for flexibility missed.
Thus, flexibility is a key to indecision.
“We don’t receive wisdom; we must discover it for ourselves after a journey that no one can take for us or spare us.” — Marcel Proust
“In Paris, they simply stared when I spoke to them in French. I never did succeed in making those idiots understand their language.”
– Mark Twain
Some thoughts on Flying:
Keep thy airspeed up, lest the earth come from below and smite thee.
Basic Flying Rules:
- Try to stay in the middle of the air.
- Do not go near the edges of it. (The edges of the air can be recognized by the appearance of ground, buildings, sea, trees and interstellar space. It is much more difficult to fly there.)
- Strive to keep the number of successful landings made equal to the number of take-offs you’ve made.
If you lend someone $20, and never see that person again, it was probably worth it. And borrow money from pessimists, since they do not expect you to pay it back.
Some managers choose to be rock solid in their commitment to flexibility. Some drink from the fountain of knowledge, others just gargle.
“That’s like asking the vegetables how to design a refrigerator.” (An actual quote I heard a company president make when asked about the idea of employee involvement. Really!)
The dome on Monticello, Thomas Jefferson’s home, conceals a billiards room. Billiards were illegal in Virginia when Jefferson lived…
The term “devil’s advocate” comes from the Roman Catholic church. When 20 of the church’s most important convene in deciding if someone should be sainted, a devil’s advocate is always appointed to give an alternative view.
Management in some companies reminds me of 5,000 ants on a log floating down the river with each ant pretending they are steering and that they know where they are going. But it is not their fault, it is simply the result of their perceptions about how things work.
For the FUN of It!
Dr. Scott Simmerman is a designer of team building games and organization improvement tools. Managing Partner of Performance Management Company since 1984, he is an experienced presenter and consultant.
Check out The Square Wheels Project, our LMS for teaching Square Wheels facilitation skills to supervisors and managers.
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