Tag Archives: command and control

Dispatch from the Corporate Egalitarian Team Trenches

One of the key themes woven through my writing is our societal transition from hierarchical to more egalitarian institutions. I’m talking about the transition from leaders giving explicit marching orders to subordinates in an obvious “pecking order”, to something more akin to a “circle of equals”, where all members of the team are expected to make important decisions, and their managers play much more of a facilitative (how can I help you be successful) than directive role.

I have witnessed this sort of transition in family life (among the other families I interact with) and religious life (in the Unitarian-Universalist religious organizations I participate in). But what I have been most focused on lately is this transition in the work world, particularly my own place of work. I work as a business analyst for a large corporation in the insurance industry, not what you might think as the leading edge of social change. But I am pleased to report that in my team of some 20 people (and other internal teams that are our “customers”) the transition from “pecking order” to “circle of equals” is alive and well!

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It’s the Governance, Stupid!

Circle of Youth & AdultsIn the Education Week March 19 article, “It’s the Classroom, Stupid: School Reform Where It Counts the Most”, author Kalman R. Hettleman is at least attempting to address the issue of governance that I highlighted in my piece yesterday on “Defining Governance”. Hettleman says…

The mismanagement of classroom instruction is the ugly secret and fatal flaw of school reform. Everyone knows that school systems are horrendously mismanaged. The media keep us fully informed and outraged at foul-ups like overspent budgets, computer glitches, bungled paperwork, defective maintenance, and unresponsive bureaucrats. But these failings, as serious as they are, tell only a small part of the story.

Though he does not use the “G-word”, I believe what he is addressing in his article speaks directly to school governance, specifically who is empowered to make school management decisions and what is the process for making those decisions. Continue reading →