I wanted to have a dog, and I was hell bent on the German shepherd breed, we had two of them earlier. Apart from having a pet dog, I had security also in my mind. Everyone else in the family was against that decision, and they had very valid reasons, based on our circumstances and my track record of getting bored with anything new very fast. They knew that eventually they will have to take care of him.
As a coincidence I saw an ad about German shepherd puppies for sale, and the seller was from our neighborhood. I could not resist the urge anymore. When no one was at home, I went and brought him home.After an year, when I look back, Theo (his name) is the darling of our home. He brings in lot of sunshine into our home. He is more like family. Every day the first thing he wants to do in the morning is playing Frisbee with me. Evenings he wants me to walk with him. Then he wants to sit outside the gate and watch people and vehicles. Theo is smart enough to make out to whom he should turn to for good food. He follows my wife like a shadow. Every day evening, he waits for the family reunion after a days work, around the small family dining table. He is committed, loyal, loving and intelligent. He inspires us in some way or other.
In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Inspiration.”
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- I am my position ( I am experiencing this when moving teams from command and control mode to self organizing teams)
- The enemy is out there (Two most widely used words among project managers are ‘but’ and ‘they’, based on my interactions with 6000 of them. Majority believes that they are perfect, and the problem is out there.)
- The illusion of taking charge. (proactive Vs reactive. Very often we mistake pro activeness as aggressive reactions )
- Fixation on events (Yes, we find some event as the trigger for everything, and fail to understand complex causes contributing to the effect)
- The parable of the boiled frog. (The problems aggravates gradually)
- The delusion of learning from experience (Very often the effect happens outside the span of focus of the cause, hence we fail to learn from experience)
- The myth of the management team (All management teams fumble when they try to resolve complex issues)
Metanoia : refers to shift in mind, paradigm shift
Learning has lost its central meaning in contemporary usage. “Yes, We learned everything about it in the training program”, This is something I keep hearing after my training / coaching programs.As far as I am concerned, communicating and taking in information is only distantly related to real learning. Am I making a mistake by making the participants believe that they know the topics, before they experience it in the real world. Could be. Real learning gets to the heart of what it means to be human. Through learning we recreate ourselves. Through learning we become able to do something we never were able to do. Through learning we re-perceive the world world and our relationship to it. Through learning we extend our capacity to create, to be part of the generative process of life.
Adaptive or survival learning – A catching up process, certifications etc, to remain employable
Generative learning – Learning to achieve mastery, resulting in the capability to create.
- Systems thinking (seeing the larger picture)
- Personal mastery ( special level of proficiency)
- Mental models (deeply ingrained assumptions, generalizations, pictures, images that influence how we understand the world)
- Building shared vision ( shared picture of the future we seek to create)
- Team learning (teams can learn in sports, performing arts, in science and in business)
Reference : The fifth discipline by Peter . Senge
WordPress disqualified my earlier blog with more than 1000 followers and nearly 300000 visits. This was due to violation of their policies. To the best of my knowledge, it was unintentional. Everything is for good. That gives me an opportunity to blog afresh, and this time more focused towards management excellence starting at a personal level and then moving to team and organization.
Sincere management rethinking is required to move from the status of followers to leaders, especially when the third world is becoming the hub of product development. This calls for rapid innovation based on serious introspection of the current statuesque based on compliance and conformance. Individuals and teams need the space to take some risks and cut loose. It is risky, and one can fail. The systems must be conducive for risk taking. Questions must be asked about the validity of our conventional processes, which will not hold good for the new era. Fast failures and learning must be promoted. I know that this is not easy, and at the same time, without these the transformation from project space to product space will be incomplete.
I did not study well when I was in the university, and ever since I got my Bachelor’s degree, I was continuously studying books and learning from my on the job experiences. Some of the books when I read them last, was slightly ahead of their time, at least for this part of the world (India). Another possibility is the fact that I was not matured enough to understand the meaning between the lines when I read them first. Now, after three decades of work as team member, manager, profit centre head, freelancer, entrepreuner, agile practirioner, project management trainer, consultant, husband and father, I think I am ready to probe the inner meaning of the print. So I have started going through them once again, with a research mindset, and I check the applicability of the concepts in the present day. I will be sharing my journey through the pages of the books in my personal library and the thoughts it triggers through this blog of mine.
I have this habit of buying books, and then dumping them without reading them completely. After a while they surface again. This 445 page masterpiece by Peter M Senge took a while to resurface again, about a decade. Here is a paragraph written by Deming, to Peter M Senge from the 10th page of the book. This paragraph resonates with my feelings after training a group of people who are used to command and control mode of working to self organizing teams. Here are Deming’s words of wisdom;
” Our prevailing system of management has destroyed our people. People are born with intrinsic motivation, self respect, dignity, curiosity to learn, joy in learning. The forces of destruction begin with toddlers – a prize for the best halloween costume, grades in school, gold stars – and on up through the university. On the job, people, teams and divisions are ranked, reward for the top, punishment for the bottom. Management by objectives, quotas, incentive pay, business plans, put together separately, division by division, cause further loss, unknown and unknowable.’
This highlights the depth of the problem, when we move from traditional management styles to agility.