The whole and its parts

The whole & its parts

That’s how it ought to be

Once in a while, I take a moment to comment on a thread that starts with some outrage or anger at how things are. I’ll take it as a fun exercise to think about reality as I see it and in contrast to the expectations named in the thread. It’s a way to trigger a different reflection and see how receptive people might be to a different perspective instead of a different opinion.

But there is an important aspect to these differences. Within the ideas people have, they also hold ideas in mind of how things should be. And to a certain extent, this is a good way to orient oneself in the maze of reality. We need to have expectations to be able to implement a vision, shape a culture, and define acceptable behavior in an organization, or to implement our projects. Without an idea of how things should be, we have no way to see how or when we are reaching an objective. Leaders would not be able to lead.

But much of such leading is based on the leadership work that has been done to define a vision, describe a culture, or define its ethics. That is these ideas have been carefully developed.

Things are different when people use ideas they have taken on from others, grown up with or never revisited. And much of the righteous indignation we’ll meet on social media is a result of the idea someone has of how things should be and how it isn’t aligned with the reality they are encountering.

It is the same with many situations in which the service we’ve expected from an organization doesn’t match the one we’ve experienced elsewhere. Or with an organization that enforces a different leadership style than the one we would like to experience while working for it.

This is not to say that one perspective is right, and others are wrong.

It is an invitation to think about where this righteous indignation comes from. If it is based on an idea in the mind of how things ought to be, then it might be a trap. An organization as well as a leader will choose why they serve people in the way they do or why they lead in the way they do. We might not like it, but we should consider the possibility that it is based on a sound reflection or the reality they are encountering.



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