Tuesday, April 6, 2010

All Orgs have challenges

It's just a fact. The more people in your organization, the more likely some individual is acting improperly right this minute. Org chaos is big in the news this week, so it's appropriate to address this fundamental fact of human interactions.

Fundamental to human nature really. Comes from the dichotomy of our nature. We yearn to be fully realized individuals while yearning to belong to something bigger than us. Causes a lot of probs really; clearly evident all through history...

You got the Odyssey, epic story of Ulysses trying to get home after the Trojan War. Know why it took him ten years? Had too many guys with him. One can barely turn a page without yet another of Ulysses' crew doing something disastrously stupid, often against direct orders.

Jesus understood this irony of human nature and worked hard against it. Kept his core group small, and spent a lot of time reminding them of the Mission Statement. That was the most effective Org in written history, but the disciples were always giving Christ trouble. It's not just Judas either; Jesus had three employees who seem to have spent most their time arguing over which of them was the coolest.

Now this week, news that a GOP employee turned in an expense report including a pricey visit to a fetish themed stripper bar. In his defense, there's probably nothing specifically addressing that in the employee handbook, which reveals another leadership frustration...

The more people on your team, the more likely a few are doing not just easily anticipated stupid, but amazing gravity-defying stupid!!!

Also this week a decades old sex abuse story that some secular media types are trying hard to blame on Pope Benedict. Well hmmm... as a lifelong student of Organizational Chaos, looks like this to me? Every Org with thousands of members will have a few rotten apples, and above them some mid-levels who place the bureaucracy above its stated principles. Nobody's convinced me yet that's Pope Benedict's personal responsibility.

I kind of like Pope Benedict, and that's not a widely held position. Wonder why such an obviously smart guy would agree to follow John Paul II? Guess he just really really wanted to be Pope, huh? Because following the most widely loved, media sharp charismatic Pontiff ever, well... that's kinda like the Monkees on tour with Jimi Hendrix, isn't it?

Yeah, I wonder how that 1967 tour went? The Mozart of electric guitar, who'll change Rock & Roll forever... and the Monkees. Jimi comes out for a set, "Foxy Lady" and "Purple Haze" sets his guitar on fire, such as that. Then a brief interlude while janitorial sweeps guitar ashes off stage of course, and then, and then?
Davey Jones shaking his tambourine and "Hey hey we're the Monkees"...

So yeah, I rather like Pope Benedict, cause right about now he must feel a LOT like Peter Tork.

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