Sunday, May 20, 2012


A notion of, everything that pleases us is correct and what bothers us is wrong stems from our "gut feel", which we often use to make many of our decisions.

Whilst this can often provide a reasonable warning indicator of danger it can also subtly affect the way we interpret many challenges that are put to us by others. 

This one premise can also be the most debilitating belief for an organisation and for individuals. The belief that an undisturbed state is preferred, and anyone or anything that introduces disturbance amounts to dissension basically makes us unable to hear anything that should "disturb" us. It makes us blind to opportunities. It will limit our innovation. It will affect any motivation to improve, or even stop what we are doing.

Whilst we might have various opinions of the story of the Titanic, do we inadvertently recreate a similar environment  in our workplace or at home. Whilst we may readily criticize the Captain for not taking heed of the warnings that were put to him, do we also prefer an undisturbed state with no challenges? 

Do we want our people to be compliant with our way of thinking? Do we get annoyed when the people around us put a different view which has the potential to cripple our plans or objectives? Are we actually dis-empowering our people to actively engage with improving our state? I wonder what the lookout at the front of the Titanic was thinking when he notified the bridge to his observations. What about the sonar operator. Were they made to feel small, did the Captain "value" their input or concern?

I have often watched employees and members of organisations put forward "unpopular" views or make hard decisions which resulted in "disturbance" only to be shut down or left out in the cold for the sake of a peaceful existence. 

Organisational leaders in fact should encourage their people to confront the norm or challenge decisions. This is the real test to the validity of the proposed action or direction and tests it for endurance and purpose. It will also strengthen the relationship within the team environment. People will feel valued and know that they are able to value add and test decisions. They will have confidence that what is being proposed can be argued, and supported and will have its best chance of producing the desired outcome. Disturbance should not be a threat to you. It should be your greatest asset.

Written on a popular t-shirt are the words 
Do not "disturb" 
I am already "disturbed" 

Why not a sign on your door that says
"Disturb me"

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