What's in a name? Boss? LO7188

Sherry L. Gould (s_gould@conknet.com)
Sun, 05 May 1996 09:52:57 -0400

Replying to LO7160 --

Michael Erickson said:

>There is a big difference between confidant assertiveness and brute
>Intimidation in the business of being a leader. I've had to handle
>life and death situations enough to know that you want the confidence
>of those you lead, not their fear.
>In the corporate world, you can lose it all and no one will die over it
>(except for the exec who jumps out a window or a mail room clerk who
>cuts loose with a weapon... but those are not normal experiences).
>True leadership is still about caring for your team, not being the
>"herder of the intimidated".

Well said!!

Three years ago I took over a facility for delinquent girls that was in

I gave the girls back their shoes; took the locks off the windows; asked
the staff to not display the keys that were needed; insisted on a system
of community, (as opposed to us against them); engaged the "community" in
cleaning the graffiti from the building and created a homey environment,
all the time using kid centered and staff centered rationals liberally.
State and Agency officials were skeptical, to say the least, that these
measures would produce desirable results. I was not surprised when things
appeared worse before they got better. Now the staff enjoy the praises of
all who come in contact with the program.

Brute intimidation had produced chaos and rebellion. More of the same
would produce more of the same. Confidant assertiveness, delivered with
liberal rationals, produced a therapeutic, accountable environment that
delivers an acceptable outcome for costs.

In a crises situation any one in a management position can spell out
required actions and expect total cooperation because we have earned the
confidence of our workers and the residents. I enjoy not having the
resistance of intimidated, resentful workers and residents when I face a
threatening situation!

How could these principles not be beneficial in a profit based, product
driven system, as well?


Sherry Gould s_gould@conknet.com

Learning-org -- An Internet Dialog on Learning Organizations For info: <rkarash@karash.com> -or- <http://world.std.com/~lo/>