The surface game in organisations is theatre of change, decision-making, reorganisation. Strategy. Most of the time, it’s pure pantomime; a show of effort is more important than real results.
The alternative – dealing with the actual the people and real change needed – would mean reckoning with human needs, and the impact of trauma, shame, and referred pain.
We have six core needs: certainty, uncertainty, belonging, significance, growth, and contribution.
But we carry trauma, pain and shame, which warp our ability to meet these needs.
From childhood – most CEs have some dark wound from early childhood which shapes their behaviours.
From the shame of realising that our systems are producing nothing like what they’re supposed to (it’s dangerous to show people how the organisation really works).
And, in the caring professions in particular, referred trauma from the people we are there to help.
Making the right kind of connection with the people behind the mask is a key to organisational breakthrough, and a Jedi power for those who can see The Force.
Can you think of an example of trauma, shame, and referred pain which has shaped an aspect of organisational life?