Recently, I understood something, which might seem obvious to You from first glance.
It seemed obvious for me, year in — year out.
And I have enough cause to belief it is still the same for a lot of fellows.
I suddenly understood real nature of importance and it struck me as lightning. I rarely felt enlightening so deep and strong and continous.
AND this enlightment feels very powerful.
I feel the need to share a bit of it with You.
/scientific management (taylorism) taught us laziness
We all are used to situations where people tell us how important something is.
We are used to these situations and some of us (me included for too long) take “importance” as an property that is somewhere included within the object — inseperable incorporated.
I walked my way through life and wondered, why the f**k, so few act according to the importance I see in their environment. Even, if these people grumble and talk about their goals, they do not take into account and act in reaction to what lies “obvious” in front of me whatching at “their” environment.
They only noticed trees where I saw a forest from all that wood around us.
Over the years I got used to the “need” to talk about the relationships of things, events and people to each other. I rarely asked about necessity and just did, because it was always necessary. No exception.
I did not care about demand. I believed, demand is automatically present, arising from the need I recognized. But this need was felt or seen only in a subset of occasions by fellow humans.
It worked fine for all these years, but I was not satisfied, personally. Something was missing. It was not powerful enough just to tell stories.
Too few were able to transfer things heared into their context.
You might think by Yourself.
And that’s what I thought very often.
Some will transfer, others not. That’s the way it is.
No, it is not!
In some environments, You need to work together.
For working together successfully, decent and mutual understanding is required for acting hand-in-hand.
Some people are good in instant understanding of their environment.
Some just “feel” where problems are and where solutions could be found.
Others expect being understood and awaiting solutions delivered to them on silver plate.
Where is the difference?
Those who understand, are used to changes in environment, re-fitting into a situation with no thought about and open minded in presence of whatever the situation is.
They re-developed or preserved what the Asians brought to us by the term “beginner’s spirit”.
Others apply to situations with “consumer’s spirit”. They expect everything delivered to their hand so they can act as they are used to. This action pattern — from my perception — is transferred from a semi-successful industrial approach based on scientific management, embossed into our surrounding environments from school to college and university, from working organizations like our company or government’s office to the facilitators of our everyday life like the supermarket and the furniture store.
Commercials all around us make us being used to this attitude until nobody questions any more.
This is more or less NOW.
In the end it is nothing less than conditioning to receive a message someone else tagged as important. AND, it makes these “consumer spirit” people crippled to be able only acting in defined environments.
They are like race-cars — needing a race-track to be useful.
AND where consumer’s are, providers are needed, also.
That’s why some people are in a situation where they “need” to deliver.
They are charged into by themselves or others to provide meaning expressed by importance. These people are placed in provider’s position where they only survive by delivering what is expected.
Therefore, leadership or management positions require commitment to deliver meaning to a task.
This forms “provider’s spirit” of those who are in charge.
Acting according to this spirit generates what systems long for:
stability by certainty.
/terms and conditions
Most words are equipped to suit by different meanings in different contexts. This gives them the capability to transport ideas from one context to another. This is how something new can emerge from our phantasy.
This is the greatness of words.
On the other hand, they work like intended only when they are used between people that are prepared to understand. This preparation I call “interpreters”. People, that are prepared by learning and practice are able to understand instantly. Others need to be prepared first.
Learning is loading an interpreter to the mindset.
You all know that. A joke works fine in Your peer-group.
Outside this in-group, the point needs to be explained — which is no fun at all.
To make fun out of this, let me explain, before we head to the jokes.
Importance is the relevance someone sees in something within the context of a situation which state is to be kept and protected or to achieve.
Therefore, importance derives from the difference between current status quo in comparison to the future status quo.
Importance therefore is complete hypothetical, because one of the comparendum is not existing, recently.
So, importance is nothing which can be objectively determined by measurement or some other proof of evidence whithout declaration.
Importance is the meaning, something inherits from context by understanding or declaration and therefore, it is completely subjective and situative.
Understanding is sub-ordination of a word to something which is sensorical perceivable, recognizable and therefore understandable without words and only by perception.
A word is a representation of this perceivable state of the outer world.
It is the transferring container from outer reality into inner reality.
By transferring this state to a word or a description build from several words, the inner picture, the image, the idea is extracted from this situation and therefore detached from space and time.
Even greater: by combination of words, images and ideas, You can create something complete new, which does not necessarily need to be experienced to form reality.
Think about fiction.
That’s where storytellers are understood as utopists, narrators, fools or liars. Difference lies within objectivity, its truth and verifiability as well as the subject and intentions at telling.
Some of You might already came to conclusion that truth is a very relative thing …
Agreeement is what is needed as the common base for a contract. Very often, agreement is assumed, supposed, presumed or something stupid like that from the bare existence of a contract document or another artefact with an intented function, comparable to a document.
Sometimes agreement is seen in a monument, sometimes it’s a flag, a symbol, logo, punchline, claim or other something, people can agree to.
That is a very, very, very dangerous misbelief.
Agreement should be there as contract was closed. Signature is taken as one sign of existence of this agreement. All this is what is understood in context and by the word “evidence”.
If all this exists, it should be evident to every fair thinking human, that agreeement was there and still is in effect.
Who signed the membership card of Your nationality?
Only a few of us signed it personally at an age where they are able to opt for it, consciously.
Me excluded. I am German by birth and that’s it.
Meanwhile things happen.
Maybe an agreement once existing is now interfering interests that are individually rated higher in importance.
Maybe people just do not understand importance for themselves and for each other. Everybody heads for his own goals and targets and by that is crossing lane of others.
Conflicting means that some ways are crossing and “travelers” risk bumping into each other.
You can solve this by struggling, by giving way or by aligning everybody according to scarce.
One famous example of alignment in presence of scarce You all know is ‘queuing’.
Success is when something achieved conditions and their describing parameters — e.g. number of units, price or time.
Hopefully, these criteria are declared and fixed upfront.
Very often, they are not.
A system is successful if it is efficient as well as effective.
Effectivity is determined from importance people attach to its status quo.
As long there is demand of a status quo which can be addressed by delivery, the system is effective.
In case of a present status quo which is demanded, the system is generating it. Take the police or armed forces as an example for “security” for its citizen.
If a state cannot establish this Status quo, it is a so called “failed state”.
In case of a future status quo it is something which can be generated or created. In every case, it is non-existing, currently.
If the future Status quo is re-gaining of a defined state, it will be generated by care and maintenance. If it is another instance of a specificed item, it will generated by a defined and trained production process, machines or humans following inherited rules of craftmanship
If it is different (aka “new”), it is created and by definition a piece of art-work differing from generating craft-work.
You can measure success and importance of a system by its queues
— in front or behind it.
- No demand AND no queues at all: new or obsolete
- Queue in front: effective (demanded), but inefficient
- Effective without any queue: performing at optimum (<85% capacity)
- System waits: low demand or over-performing (<80% capacity)
- Queue in the backyard: over-efficient (>85% capacity) but low effective (demand is lacking)
– overproduction, beyond optimum, market price-killing AND wasting
Beginner’s spirit is needed when situations change.
Best indicator to such a change is introduction or farewell of people to or from a group.
Check-ins and check-outs therefore are crucial to inform everybody about a change taking place.
For those, who are familiar with “beginner’s spirit” this is the indicator to be open and let happen what will happen.
I once learned, some indigene cultures (I do not know from where in the world), imagine a situation between people as unique and having a singular identity.
The moment one joins, it is not imagined as extension but switch to a complete different reality shared in time, space and people.
Seems to be a very wise view to the world.
Importance is subjective. It is the attribution someone sticks to a component, a milestone or another influencing issue between now and the aimed or unwanted then.
We build organizations from equality in mind. We share thoughts with people who believe what we believe. Most of us feel sorrow in face of disagreement by that. This results from the error to believe, being in an organization which is build upon like-mindedness.
To be precise, it is the mixup between cause and effect.
You are not primarily in the organization because of Your mindset. The mindset is build from that organization and the constant checking and balancing of understanding in terms of goals.
Organisation is build upon importance.
And importance has this feature of auto-selection in it.
Are You with us?
Do You agree?
The very hard moment is to resist saying
“Yes” and thinking
“What the f**k!
I have no idea what they want from me.”
/How can I be sure?
If I could only be sure!
Certainty is better to act upon.
It builds a rock-solid launchpad to act from.
- What, if people around You have no clue either?
- What, if it is just easy and convenient following another person?
- What, if the person You follow has no clue either, but is a better actor or narrator?
/importance is made and declared
Importance is man-made.
Importance is an attribute, someone sticks to an item.
Importance matters and makes something matter.
Relationships, which are build from importance by their nature, are subject to constant change.
They need to be assured and established every time situation changes.
This might be the opening phase of a meeting You start with a check-in ritual. This might be the shared meal with the family in the evening.
Or it might be a sign of acknowledgement attached to a blogpost.
/make Yourself matter
Do not take situations for or as granted.
Whatever You experience around You is the result of matter and importance someone sticked to it.
Ask to understand.
A slight turn in Your mind will change it from a assumed stupidity into insignia of wisdom.
Just change Your attitude from
“I need to know, because it is my job to know” or
“[x] needs to know, because it is [his/her/their] job to know”
“I ask to assure common understanding”
Everybody who is really with You, is able to explain in own and slightly differing words what it is about, You want to achieve in common.
Enlight Your fellows with Your “provider’s spirit” where environment is well defined — like on a nuclear powered submarine.
Where environment is not well defined or just unknow to Yourself, enlight Yourself by using Your “beginner’s spirit” and ask, what is need to know for understanding importance.
Everybody uninspirated around You is only able to repeat what is already said and expressing “agreement” by saying
“Yes, Sir. Very good, Sir. As You like it, Sir!”
You get access to whatever I estimate being worth to share on my twitter-channel.
- Nolan Porter, “If I could only be sure”
- Clausewitz “The Fog of War”
- L. David Marquett, “Turn the Ship Around!”
- Todd Brison about “Standards” (newsletter) and “shiny people”
… and many fragments of insights deriving from constant interaction with people
If You like to change Your life into a serious party, I installed a handrail from tailoristic envrionments into the ballroom at the Bel Etage.
I called it the up2U-protocol. You can find more about here.
May all Your needs vanish into reality.
Live long and prosper.
Life runs in circles. Some are smaller, some are bigger.
In the end, there is no end — only another beginning.
Enjoy, and share what You like. Feel free to make life great by doing so!
/invitation to resonante
I would like to ask You for three quick actions, with small effort on Your side and great benefit for all
— You, future readers and me for understanding and improving what matters most.
- A “Like” is a nice signal of acknowledgement.
Just click on the clapping hands and rest the click as long as You like to applaude.
- Feel free to forward this post to anybody who might gain benefit from it.
You will find some tools for easy sharing below to this article.
- Additionally, interaction is necessary to do great.
Please, share Your thoughts by commenting (below) or contacting directly.
Remember, a topic gets shape by questions AND constructive disagreement.
Originally published at commodus.org on September 13, 2017.