Scotch, Arguments & Birthday Candles…


Minion-Friends-1(G)Today was my birthday… no big deal as by now, I don’t pay much attention to it; except perhaps to note that it has been occurring for far too long… so faithfully my curmudgeon sliver of self-doubt observes, as it comes-up for air once every year around this time.

Still, no matter how much it moans and whinges about the uselessness of taking space and other esoteric meanderings, it manages to keep a mildly curious eye out for any acknowledgement that this day actually matters to someone beyond the expected (less than a handful) it deems to “have no choice” due to genetic and social responsibilities.

It follows that as evening descends, we settle to review the day we say… but, reality is that we know we’ll continue arguing about meaning, purpose and the very eminence of oneself over its sliver of doubt… all civilly accompanied by several double espressos with their scotch and cigar sidekicks.

We acknowledge and review the phone calls and private texts received from family and close friends; oneself smiles and deems each one of them memorable and wonderful, whilst the sliver grunts and views them as “default obligations” fulfilled and made irrelevant to any discussion due to their biases… so the argument generally begins…

Intensifying as we acknowledge the dozens of good wishes received through social media… what a fortunate man I am I say… Irrelevant, the sliver shouts as it dives into its monologue negating “remembrance”, on how algorithms actually instigate people to write something on these occasions so they don’t stand out as an “exception”.

It’s contrived and meaningless due to its selfish origin, it has nothing to do with you… it blasts pointing at me to emphasize its argument.

That may be so in a few instances I counter, but can’t be true of all of the good wishes uniquely worded to connect with me and share that I am on the writer’s mind; I said whilst quickly pointing to several texts, as significant evidence for my case.

Are you so naïve to not “see” the formula behind these snippets? It retorts with some disdain… when was the last time any of this folk actually picked-up the phone to call you? truly engaged with you? forgave, praised or shared something of themselves with you?

…why would they care now on this one day, if not for their own needs and devices?

I thought about this a bit whilst noticing the smugness that the sliver of doubt was beginning to manifest…
“if” there is some truth in your “exception” argument I start, why would that take away from the fact that; even if for only one minute or three, they thought of me… and such compelled each of them to express they wished me well?

How can such not be a meaningful example that at some point; perhaps even today, I touched and mattered to them enough, regardless of whatever means got them to express anything at all?
Well, not everyone you know sent you a message grumped the sliver…

As for those who didn’t express anything, if they arrived at it through their intentional decision to either hurt me or ignore me, even such would mean that I came to their mind however fleetingly… reflecting that I mattered enough for them to arrive at a conclusion regardless of whatever that was.

Is that enough for you? is that all there is? the sliver of doubt sneered looking askew…Minion-Friends-2(G)

Does it matter? I ask back… why is it so important to you to observe relevance in anyone else’s views? Is it not up to us how we choose to accept and deal with the joys and griefs that cross our paths each day?

Were each of us not designed for the greatness of being useful and whole and joyful and unoffendable? And as such is the case, doesn’t it follow that such greatness can only really be achieved through each of our individual relationships starting with our creator?

Are we not extremely grateful to be alive and lovingly thought of by ONE on such special day? …I shouted as the sliver of doubt was worming back into its tiny little box…

Copyright, Joseph Pereira 2011-2020

© Copyright, Joseph Pereira 2011-2020

Further Thoughts on Org Structures…


…as enablers of PERFORMANCE and CULTURE

MATRICED ORGANIZATIONS – have distinctive multi-stakeholder intersections and, better than any other structure, help institutionalize the mitigation of corporate and operational risk. The very distributed lines of accountability and responsibility, the root of this mitigation; as anything flowing through the system will require multiple layers of assessment, input and approval… a necessity for organizations and industries that are heavily regulated and under close scrutiny, a counter-intuitive process for those businesses that require lesser levels of internal control.

HIERARCHAL ORGANIZATIONS – are human instinctive and thus, the most common form of structure; where one person or a group of individuals, set policy and direct the goods and services produced by such entity through employed or contracted others. Consequently, such organization will naturally consolidate or compress “power” at or near its top levels which, although operationally efficient, often result in much lesser corporate transparency and can more easily become the stage-set for dangerous governance behavior. The concentration of power-at-the-top is not a “bad thing” per se…but it certainly is a “volatile thing” both; when it is “real” and more so when it is “perceived”; especially without a robust set of independent and effective checks & balances.

FLAT ORGANIZATIONS – aim to streamline their structure as close to one dispersed leadership layer as possible… a continuum of functional responsibility and/or accountability which is governed by consensual majority. These too have their place in the organizational puzzle; there’s more opportunity to explore the serendipity in-between people and ideas, whilst events and projects do flow faster through the system… however, such structure; which necessitates a great deal of stakeholder self-discipline and confidence (if not downright boldness), is not for the faint-at-heart, can easily lead to excesses as well as governance lapses and often is harder to manage than the challenging matrix format.

In the end, all organizations should adopt a structure that best supports its objectives after a “balanced” analysis of the good and not-so-good traits and aspects of each format, as very few things are all good or all bad. BUT…

We all should be mindful that; organizational structures provide only a background to facilitate interactive protocols, no structure will actually achieve or deliver anything… only PEOPLE; performing within the context of these structures (and sometimes stretching their envelopes), can actually make them work effectively or not… which very naturally leads to;

VISION, DIRECTION AND CULTURE – by “Vision” I do not mean the average corporate statement all of us at times snicker about. Vision statements should be lofty and bold, slightly out-of-reach and a powerful reflection of what an organization truly aspires to be and/or achieve… thus requiring the continued building of organizational “bridges of understanding” to translate and link them to specific and measurable objectives and actions throughout the organization. This is a key aspect and responsibility of Leadership regardless of org structure format; to embed, defend and drive (thus making it “real”) the vision of an organization into becoming a key part of its daily ethos.

Management Teams, when aligned and either enlightened or within enlightened organizations, tend to achieve this through a collaborative and informed effort, taking on-board their own intellect and experience, the input from benchmarked competitors, customers/markets, and the voices of the whole internal organization not necessarily in that order. All of it… working together and in-synch become an enterprise’s “Culture” me thinks; the foundational component that binds and supports all people interact, govern and out-deliver consistently.

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