When I was a business student, I was talking with a tutor. They had a wealth of experience, they were much older than me, and had done a Phd. I now realise that there comes a time with many people, that they are able to give back some experiences and wisdom that they have gained over their learning. Learning is such a valuable part of life - because it is hard earned.
I remember they said that, after a year of research and analysis, they had come to an interesting conclusion. Their research had focused on what REALLY makes an organisation work. At that time, as now, I was hungry for wisdom. Starting off at the beginning of my career, I could feel the weight of importance, in choosing the right steps to take me on a fruitful journey through life.
Her answer was the two Ps. Power and politics. I remember being slightly disappointed, as I did not recognise that in my own experience, nor was I expecting such a simple answer to such a profound question.
Some years later, I think she was right. You can put aside the processes, products, and wonderful things people learn. The REALITY of the drivers behind behavours managers express, and the decisions we take, are more to do with power and politics, as anything else.
Our male dominated culture of how managers should act, seems to have injected ego and competition into our way of being. Anyone ignoring this as a backdrop to organisational change is ignoring a key aspect of how organsiations work. Those managers that can see and rise above this, are destined to be truly effective
Helping others to learn how to do better things