Counter-acting the Stockholm Syndrome

Stockholm Syndrome is a psychological phenomenon in which hostages display empathy and sympathy for their captors, often developing positive feelings towards them and defending them. I’m often fascinated by how people, when they walk through the door of their workplaces, adopt behaviours akin to the symptoms of Stockholm Syndrome.  Despite knowing in our hearts and… Continue reading Counter-acting the Stockholm Syndrome

I am the Walrus

Know how you have an experience and some song lyrics pop into your head that seem to have been written especially for it?  “Expert textpert, choking smoker, don’t you think the joker laughs at you?”  Parallel process.  Happens to me all the time when I’m working.  I suddenly notice that what the client is doing,… Continue reading I am the Walrus

The certainty of uncertainty

Sometimes you read something that really strikes a chord.  I recently saw this quote from Kurt Vonnegut:  “We have to continually be jumping off cliffs and developing our wings on the way down.”  In other times, I would read this and it would simply seem like a poetic truism, but I’m currently experiencing a number… Continue reading The certainty of uncertainty

Managing change. Really?

These are, indeed, interesting times.  We are bombarded, seemingly daily, with a slew of economic, social and environmental information which paints an ever more complex picture of what is going on in our world, our communities and our workplaces.  Depending on the lenses through which we view this data, which data we choose to look… Continue reading Managing change. Really?

Leadership and complexity

If you have ever been for an eye test, you will know that the optician will have you look through a contraption with lots of lenses, and then proceed to add and take away lenses until your vision can see the letters on the chart precisely.  They will spend time experimenting with the lenses and… Continue reading Leadership and complexity

Making mistakes gracefully

If you screw up, then own up and lighten up. Dess and Picken, in “Changing Roles: Leadership in the 21st Century” (2000) wrote, “The traditional tools and techniques of management are designed, in large measure, to ensure organisational stability, operational efficiency, and predictable performance.  Formal planning processes, centralised decision-making, hierarchical organisation structures, standardised procedures and… Continue reading Making mistakes gracefully

Creativity: beyond the ten top tips

Further to my previous post, the point of growing spontaneity is to be able to deal with the unexpected, the unpredictable and the increasingly complex.  Orchestra conductors have long known this.  They lead in complexity.  Conducting a performance is about orchestrating the dynamic between the many instrumentalists, not commanding or micro-managing each individual to ‘get… Continue reading Creativity: beyond the ten top tips

How to let your creativity flow

Do any of these give you a tingle in your gut? You walk into an art shop and see the colourful rows of paint tubes begging to be squeezed onto a palette, the soft, alluring brushes displayed from large to small, and canvases of all sizes screaming to be painted upon.  You want to handle… Continue reading How to let your creativity flow