Human systems are powerful. They can drive a consistent behavior from anyone who occupies a position in the system, regardless of who it is. This means that if you have a role in an organization, whether you’re at the top, in the middle, or at the bottom of the leadership structure, you tend to have certain behaviors, because the system has forces that are common among all organizations.
I attended a workshop today where we performed a simulation of a company. There were about 35 people and we all had certain roles, top managers, middle managers, bottom workers, and customers. It was an amazing experience. We were all eerily surprised how our actions mimicked real life behavior and interaction between people with different roles.
The most valuable thing about the simulation was that we were able to stop in the middle of it, several times, and take a look at how we were behaving. We analzed what was going on in regards to our conversations, strategies, and attitudes. We popped up to 30,000 feet and said, “What is going on here?”
If that can work in a simulation, why can’t we use that technique in our real life? Wouldn’t it be valuable to rise above your situation and say, “How am I acting right now? Why am I behaving this way?” Is there something I should be doing differently?
Self analysis is probably the most powerful tool for creating change.
So do it.
Flickr photo by Bernt Rostad