I remember still during my university years one thought from the book of Marcus Aurelius “Alone” kept me alert. Its meaning is approximately the following: “The more you become a philosopher, a romantic, the more hypocrites are getting around you, building dirty politics, manipulation”. I want to add: “The state, the company, your home just turn into card castles, become temporary ones…”
Getting involved into new development projects of companies, the thought was catching up with me already with artifacts: next to ideological and talented Entrepreneurs, Founders of companies you are sure to find a Demon. Of course, not literally, in a figurative sense ;). Who is it? It’s a super-loyal person to the Owner, someone uniquely skilled at manipulation. He does not create anything in practice, but skillfully affects the business. The strength of the policy of such a person sometimes exceeds the strength of the owner. And the Owner doesn’t notice it or pretends not to notice. Everyone who is committed to the development of the company, suffer from this Demon. But they are often reluctant to tell their “God” about it. They choose the path of “suffering”. The company environment is unhealthy, frankly speaking, it’s somewhat demonic … And what financial, market results should you expect? When you understand clearly that Culture=EBITDA and capitalization.
What to do? I would offer 3 ways to drive the demon out.
Way number one: to clean the soul of the organization from the “demon power”. Not just from the “demon”. Feel the difference! The presence of such role in the company was generated in the culture. He/she is the result. What usually creates such a culture: mistrust of the owner, closeness, lack of honest feedback in the company, hierarchical pattern, power distance, lack of pragmatic/natural criteria for assessing success/failure of the company and key business processes, and … imbalance towards “squeezing everything out of the business here and now” instead of the system contribution to the company “Growth*Development*Capitalization”. This method is difficult and long, but consistent, with sustainable effect.
Way number two: “Papal”. To grow from the inside or take from the outside a successor — an Angel. A human follower in the Vision of the Creator, but a very strong strategist and manager, “a virus of another culture”. To try to break the direct connection with the Demon. Of course, restating your own role in the company.
Way number three: “Knightly”. To find someone who likes to “fight for the light”, “kill the demons”: A knight. Do you know them? 🙂 He/she can do it for the organization very quickly. And your job as the owner: to ensure maximum precision. Because demons sometimes give organizations out to partners-owners, are involved in covert raids. Safety is Your responsibility, the Owner — Creator. Truth for Knights: people like You are often killed…
In conclusion, I want to say, that the system for its development always need a little chaos. But let the chaos be creative. The source for innovation, experiments, discoveries, breakthrough strategies, valuable lessons from some failed attempts. No demons are needed for the system development. Don’t wait for hell, act! Turn on the right approach. One hint: you can seldom pass into exile, use the tools — save time and life of the company.