No one can discuss it

Have you ever noticed in your organization that the words and behaviors aren’t aligned?  Some people call this not “walking the talk.”

Chris Argyris, in his book Flawed Advice and the Management Trap, provides a rapid timeline of how this misalignment is often hidden within an organization.  He says,

1. Managers state an inconsistent message as if it is consistent.
2. The managers’ Model I behavior makes the contradiction “undiscussible.”
3. As a result, the “undiscussibility” also becomes undiscussible.
4. The problem perpetuates itself, because no one can discuss it.
The great news is that it is a myth that no one can discuss it.  Some brave, first souls, can venture out within the organization to discuss the undiscussable and sometimes break the organization out of their slumber.
Last week I wrote about the courage it takes to step out and say what is going on.  Tonight I want to link you to an abstract of Argyris’ book, where within five quick pages you’ll get a sense of why the misalignment occurs and how to break out of it.
The first step to breaking out, just like the first step in driving change, is to choose something better for yourself and therefore to talk while everyone else stays silent.
Will you be that person who speaks first in your organization?
Why not try it?
You just might change everything.

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  1. Pingback: This Week’s Reading List « Engine For Change

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