Simon Terry

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Don’t just describe the problem

Describing the problem is a beginning

Most people believe change begins when you describe the problem. Describing the problem clearly is the beginning. David Whyte described it well:

See, even if you’re stuck in life, if you can describe just exactly the way you’re stuck, then you will immediately recognise that you can’t go on that way anymore. So, just saying precisely, writing precisely how you’re stuck, or how you’re alienated, opens up a door of freedom for you.- David Whyte

Beginnings aren’t endings

Then again, there is Dilbert.

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Scott Adam’s strip has been ruthlessly skewering corporate life for years. We see these moments and recognise them immediately.  We share them and discuss them. The appeal of the scenarios are that we know they still happen every day in organisations just like our own. In fact, Adams is overwhelmed with suggestions by email for new strips.

So we look at Dilbert, know change is needed in our organisations and do what exactly?

Describing the problem, gossiping about it quietly or complaining to one’s friends over a beer is a small start.  Too many small starts become false starts, repeated over and over with no progress.

From false starts to progress

Once you have described the problem, you need to act to make it different. Act. Make one little thing different. Today.

Don’t do it alone. Start or join a movement.


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