September 16, 2003
Shameless Communal Promotion - of course Beyond Branding is beautifully edited and practically ready for any inquisitive reader's attention, so I don't want to link it overmuch to the next book I'm meddling with, which a full-time journalist will wordsmith. But there is heroic intent linked with Nicholas's chapter (see John's latest post) and to and all worldwide calls for reforming organisational governance as this quote from Nicholas' chapter demonstrates:
"The ideals of human perfectibility and of achievement are authentic antidotes to the existential anxiety of guilt. What is true for an individual is also true for our institutions. This understanding of existential guilt will ultimately lead us to measure all institutions – such as a business, the family, education, the law, commerce and politics – by the degree to which they support the development of human potential."
(Koestenbaum and Block, 2001: 314)
Being a mathematician, I know that the world's largest organisations are currently governed by measurements that are only perfect for one thing over the long run: compounding conflicts between people. We need to co-develop a three year plan to change this (realistically so that one group of organisations that want to restore their humanity cooperate by benchmarking and sharing corporate responsibility/risk knowledge, and then from year 2 beat the hell out of all lesser organisations giving them one chance to join in - because there is no reason why all purposeful organisations shouldn't join in the side of being trusted to deliver all the value promises they make). But before we get to networking that worldwide cooperation initiative for humanity: what should the book title be?
The title (in green) doesn't grab the eyes (any advice?); but do you see the gist of the big human story and the catch 22 of the internetworking age? We have to seek to influence simultaneously both the HOW's & WHY's atop of all the world's biggest organisations in terms of current governance, before human inter-disciplinary mentors like us at beyond-branding can help facilitate changes required to link the knowledge co-worker's integrity and focused imagination to the core service dynamics of organisations (mapped as human relationship infrastructures).
"Governing the multipliers of trust-flow & cash-flow
- seeing the very human crises of confidence in valuing intangibles and systemising the transparency of relationships"
Our future depends on our biggest organisations learning quickly that Trust-flow multiplies cash-flow not vice versa. We live in an age where 80% of all value (construction or destruction) depends on networks of relationships and the integrity around which they spin. The crucial question people must ask everywhere : is this organisational system conflict resolving or conflict multiplying?
What happens when a conflict multiplying global corporate spins a national government viciously? Which people will lose first and how far will value destruction compound? Do we understand every time we listen to the news that the most terrifying global events have their roots in compound failures of people to relate respectfully with each other? Why cannot the richer nations care enough about the policies of their global businesses to demand they take responsibility for the bare necessities in poorer nations such as clean water, basic nutrition and health care, equality of races and genders, personal safety?
All of this could arguably come down to theory that was once perfect failing to change from machine-age mass production to people-age multipliers of deeply-caring service and imaginative knowhow networking. Consider:
false accounting (using a 500 year tradition -and transactional model of organisation - that machines are investments but people are costs)
the apartheids of economics and policy planning which literally refuse to connect together human variables because such dynamics would not be so simple to number-crunch, and excel at spreadsheeting
TRANSPARENT CONNECTIVITY OF HUMAN SYSTEM OF SYSTEMS.doc permalink
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