In last weeks #GCDrive class I touched on a lot of the topics that have been featured as blog posts here. To aid my new Guiding Coalition members with taking their new topics to heart, I thought I would recycle some of the old posts.
At some point last week I got off on a rant about the essential difference between submitting to:
- Physics (which is indifferent to your submission or not — submission only has value for you, not for the physics-based system you are trying to control)
- Man-made rules or policies or instructions, which may or may not be documents detailing an accurate way to submit to physics.
Back in February I posted a rant on the same topic, titled “Which Rules to Follow” and cited a story about Admiral Rickover (yes, I have an intellectual crush on him!). The story goes:
Rickover was keenly aware that there are two kinds of rules. He understood that laws of nature, such as the effects of gravity, or radiation, or excessive temperature or pressure, cannot be gotten around by fast talk, political influence, or subterfuge. On the other hand, man-made rules are a different entity. Some, such as laws passed by legislative bodies, must be obeyed, and he was scrupulous about this. Others, such as bureaucratic procedures defining how one may carry out assigned responsibilities, sometimes can and should be circumvented, he felt. In particular, those procedures that “everyone” followed because “it’s just our policy” he not only spurned but did so with great pleasure.” – As told by Theodore Rockwell in The Rickover Effect
Richard Feynman expressed the same sentiment within the Rogers Commission Report on the Challenger disaster when he said,
For a successful technology, reality must take precedence over public relations, for nature cannot be fooled.
We’d all do well to have that over our desks to keep that truth in our active thoughts each day.
Now, let’s turn to communication:
- Put Your Name On It! – Stressing the importance of authorship, especially in large bureaucracies.
- When One Blue Crayon Isn’t Enough – About muddled language and the confusion it produces.
- Write for Action – About the difference between active and passive sentences.
- You’re Never Done – You have to tell everyone at least three times. That’s just the way it is.
And, self-preservation while driving change:
- Don’t Let Yourself Be Overrun – How not to let other people’s good ideas swamp your change
- Win-Win – How to break conflicts
- Suspending Assumptions – How to break thought conflicts
Well, that should be enough to keep any new Guiding Coalition member busy and get them poking around the blog to see what topics I’ve already touched that they may have missed. I hope you enjoyed this recycling project.
Did you know there are 446 posts on this blog? That’s a lot of content. One of these days I’ll have to curate it down into an e-book or something. If you’ve got an preferences for what topics should be featured in the book, drop me a comment. Right now, that’s still a glimmer in my eye and open to much shifting and parsing.