Nothing is completely irrelevant LO5886

Dave Birren, MB-5, 608-267-2442 (
Wed, 28 Feb 1996 09:36 CST

Replying to Andrew Moreno in Nothing is completely irrelevant LO5848:

The title of this thread is certainly appropriate, given the variety of
topics discussed in it!

Andrew wrote:

>I think that organizational leaders or even high-level organizational
>change consultants possess a great deal of brain power to be able to
>manage organizational detail and dynamic complexity. It is really
>staggering how much data is involved to operate in _the present_.


>[I don't have this brain power but I've been thinking about what it would
>take to apply an approach similar to the one you outlined above because
>I believe that I am capable of learning how to develop this brain power.]

I'd suggest that we have now touched on the central problem of Taoism.
The duty of the Taoist is to see deeply into a situation and act or not
act according to what the situation calls for. (If I have this wrong, my
apologies to Lao Tse and Tobin Quereau.) But because everything is
connected to everything else, it takes an incredibly broad and deep
awareness of the big picture to know, not only whether to act, but also
what to do and when.

I try to assume that I don't have enough information (that is, I respect
the power of my ignorance), so I tend to work in draft mode, open to
change, as my actions interact with the "system" and then come back around
to teach me something that was there but I didn't see or take into

I'm not so sure that leaders and consultants have the brain power they're
credited with. What they do have is power, self-confidence, and
resources, which enable them to drive human systems rather than be driven
by them. We could start a whole new listserv devoted to the mistakes made
by leaders.



David E. Birren -- Wisconsin Dept. of Natural Resources -- Phone 608-267-2442 -- Fax 608-267-3579

There is no excuse for being uncivilized.

Learning-org -- An Internet Dialog on Learning Organizations For info: <> -or- <>