The Impossible Dream

The Impossible Dream“Tilting at windmills” – a phrase made famous by the off-kilter actions of knight-errant Don Quixote in ‘Man of La Mancha’ – signifies a misdirected idealism.  Indeed, crazy Don Quixote saw the beautiful in everything, no matter how much trouble it got him into, no matter how others derided his optimism. Continue reading

What Unspoken Agreements Guide Your Leaders’ Behavior?

shocked business manFatima shook her head in bewilderment as she talked about the company she joined six months ago in a managerial position.  “It’s so hard to acculturate here,” she said.  “There are so many unspoken norms.  If you ask people the ‘rules’, they can’t even express them.  But you sure know you’ve violated one when you accidentally bump up against it!”

Fatima’s experience is not unusual.  Organizational culture is a product of learned behavior over time.  It is one of the most difficult things to penetrate for leaders who join an organization, because the ‘rules’ are usually silent – not intentionally, but simply because they’ve formed over time like layers of magma from a once-active volcano.  Continue reading