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The Speech that Signals the Change of the World and Setting the Scene for the 21st Century.

19/03/2014

Address by President of the Russian Federation

Vladimir PutinVladimir Putin addressed State Duma deputies, Federation Council members, heads of Russian regions and civil society representatives in the Kremlin.

 

PRESIDENT OF RUSSIA VLADIMIR PUTIN: Federation Council members, State Duma deputies, good afternoon. Representatives of the Republic of Crimea and Sevastopol are here among us, citizens of Russia, residents of Crimea and Sevastopol!

Dear friends, we have gathered here today in connection with an issue that is of vital, historic significance to all of us. A referendum was held in Crimea on March 16 in full compliance with democratic procedures and international norms.

More than 82 percent of the electorate took part in the vote. Over 96 percent of them spoke out in favour of reuniting with Russia. These numbers speak for themselves.

To understand the reason behind such a choice it is enough to know the history of Crimea and what Russia and Crimea have always meant for each other.

Everything in Crimea speaks of our shared history and pride. This is the location of ancient Khersones, where Prince Vladimir was baptised. His spiritual feat of adopting Orthodoxy predetermined the overall basis of the culture, civilisation and human values that unite the peoples of Russia, Ukraine and Belarus. The graves of Russian soldiers whose bravery brought Crimea into the Russian empire are also in Crimea. This is also Sevastopol – a legendary city with an outstanding history, a fortress that serves as the birthplace of Russia’s Black Sea Fleet. Crimea is Balaklava and Kerch, Malakhov Kurgan and Sapun Ridge. Each one of these places is dear to our hearts, symbolising Russian military glory and outstanding valour.

Crimea is a unique blend of different peoples’ cultures and traditions. This makes it similar to Russia as a whole, where not a single ethnic group has been lost over the centuries. Russians and Ukrainians, Crimean Tatars and people of other ethnic groups have lived side by side in Crimea, retaining their own identity, traditions, languages and faith.

Incidentally, the total population of the Crimean Peninsula today is 2.2 million people, of whom almost 1.5 million are Russians, 350,000 are Ukrainians who predominantly consider Russian their native language, and about 290,000-300,000 are Crimean Tatars, who, as the referendum has shown, also lean towards Russia.

True, there was a time when Crimean Tatars were treated unfairly, just as a number of other peoples in the USSR. There is only one thing I can say here: millions of people of various ethnicities suffered during those repressions, and primarily Russians.

Crimean Tatars returned to their homeland. I believe we should make all the necessary political and legislative decisions to finalise the rehabilitation of Crimean Tatars, restore them in their rights and clear their good name.

We have great respect for people of all the ethnic groups living in Crimea. This is their common home, their motherland, and it would be right – I know the local population supports this – for Crimea to have three equal national languages: Russian, Ukrainian and Tatar.

Colleagues,

In people’s hearts and minds, Crimea has always been an inseparable part of Russia. This firm conviction is based on truth and justice and was passed from generation to generation, over time, under any circumstances, despite all the dramatic changes our country went through during the entire 20th century.

After the revolution, the Bolsheviks, for a number of reasons – may God judge them – added large sections of the historical South of Russia to the Republic of Ukraine. This was done with no consideration for the ethnic make-up of the population, and today these areas form the southeast of Ukraine. Then, in 1954, a decision was made to transfer Crimean Region to Ukraine, along with Sevastopol, despite the fact that it was a city of union subordination. This was the personal initiative of the Communist Party head Nikita Khrushchev. What stood behind this decision of his – a desire to win the support of the Ukrainian political establishment or to atone for the mass repressions of the 1930’s in Ukraine – is for historians to figure out.

What matters now is that this decision was made in clear violation of the constitutional norms that were in place even then. The decision was made behind the scenes. Naturally, in a totalitarian state nobody bothered to ask the citizens of Crimea and Sevastopol. They were faced with the fact. People, of course, wondered why all of a sudden Crimea became part of Ukraine. But on the whole – and we must state this clearly, we all know it – this decision was treated as a formality of sorts because the territory was transferred within the boundaries of a single state. Back then, it was impossible to imagine that Ukraine and Russia may split up and become two separate states. However, this has happened.

Unfortunately, what seemed impossible became a reality. The USSR fell apart. Things developed so swiftly that few people realised how truly dramatic those events and their consequences would be. Many people both in Russia and in Ukraine, as well as in other republics hoped that the Commonwealth of Independent States that was created at the time would become the new common form of statehood. They were told that there would be a single currency, a single economic space, joint armed forces; however, all this remained empty promises, while the big country was gone. It was only when Crimea ended up as part of a different country that Russia realised that it was not simply robbed, it was plundered.

At the same time, we have to admit that by launching the sovereignty parade Russia itself aided in the collapse of the Soviet Union. And as this collapse was legalised, everyone forgot about Crimea and Sevastopol ­– the main base of the Black Sea Fleet. Millions of people went to bed in one country and awoke in different ones, overnight becoming ethnic minorities in former Union republics, while the Russian nation became one of the biggest, if not the biggest ethnic group in the world to be divided by borders.

Now, many years later, I heard residents of Crimea say that back in 1991 they were handed over like a sack of potatoes. This is hard to disagree with. And what about the Russian state? What about Russia? It humbly accepted the situation. This country was going through such hard times then that realistically it was incapable of protecting its interests. However, the people could not reconcile themselves to this outrageous historical injustice. All these years, citizens and many public figures came back to this issue, saying that Crimea is historically Russian land and Sevastopol is a Russian city. Yes, we all knew this in our hearts and minds, but we had to proceed from the existing reality and build our good-neighbourly relations with independent Ukraine on a new basis. Meanwhile, our relations with Ukraine, with the fraternal Ukrainian people have always been and will remain of foremost importance for us. (Applause)

Today we can speak about it openly, and I would like to share with you some details of the negotiations that took place in the early 2000s. The then President of Ukraine Mr Kuchma asked me to expedite the process of delimiting the Russian-Ukrainian border. At that time, the process was practically at a standstill. Russia seemed to have recognised Crimea as part of Ukraine, but there were no negotiations on delimiting the borders. Despite the complexity of the situation, I immediately issued instructions to Russian government agencies to speed up their work to document the borders, so that everyone had a clear understanding that by agreeing to delimit the border we admitted de facto and de jure that Crimea was Ukrainian territory, thereby closing the issue.

We accommodated Ukraine not only regarding Crimea, but also on such a complicated matter as the maritime boundary in the Sea of Azov and the Kerch Strait. What we proceeded from back then was that good relations with Ukraine matter most for us and they should not fall hostage to deadlock territorial disputes. However, we expected Ukraine to remain our good neighbour, we hoped that Russian citizens and Russian speakers in Ukraine, especially its southeast and Crimea, would live in a friendly, democratic and civilised state that would protect their rights in line with the norms of international law.

However, this is not how the situation developed. Time and time again attempts were made to deprive Russians of their historical memory, even of their language and to subject them to forced assimilation. Moreover, Russians, just as other citizens of Ukraine are suffering from the constant political and state crisis that has been rocking the country for over 20 years.

I understand why Ukrainian people wanted change. They have had enough of the authorities in power during the years of Ukraine’s independence. Presidents, prime ministers and parliamentarians changed, but their attitude to the country and its people remained the same. They milked the country, fought among themselves for power, assets and cash flows and did not care much about the ordinary people. They did not wonder why it was that millions of Ukrainian citizens saw no prospects at home and went to other countries to work as day labourers. I would like to stress this: it was not some Silicon Valley they fled to, but to become day labourers. Last year alone almost 3 million people found such jobs in Russia. According to some sources, in 2013 their earnings in Russia totalled over $20 billion, which is about 12% of Ukraine’s GDP.

I would like to reiterate that I understand those who came out on Maidan with peaceful slogans against corruption, inefficient state management and poverty. The right to peaceful protest, democratic procedures and elections exist for the sole purpose of replacing the authorities that do not satisfy the people. However, those who stood behind the latest events in Ukraine had a different agenda: they were preparing yet another government takeover; they wanted to seize power and would stop short of nothing. They resorted to terror, murder and riots. Nationalists, neo-Nazis, Russophobes and anti-Semites executed this coup. They continue to set the tone in Ukraine to this day.

The new so-called authorities began by introducing a draft law to revise the language policy, which was a direct infringement on the rights of ethnic minorities. However, they were immediately ‘disciplined’ by the foreign sponsors of these so-called politicians. One has to admit that the mentors of these current authorities are smart and know well what such attempts to build a purely Ukrainian state may lead to. The draft law was set aside, but clearly reserved for the future. Hardly any mention is made of this attempt now, probably on the presumption that people have a short memory. Nevertheless, we can all clearly see the intentions of these ideological heirs of Bandera, Hitler’s accomplice during World War II.

It is also obvious that there is no legitimate executive authority in Ukraine now, nobody to talk to. Many government agencies have been taken over by the impostors, but they do not have any control in the country, while they themselves – and I would like to stress this – are often controlled by radicals. In some cases, you need a special permit from the militants on Maidan to meet with certain ministers of the current government. This is not a joke – this is reality.

Those who opposed the coup were immediately threatened with repression. Naturally, the first in line here was Crimea, the Russian-speaking Crimea. In view of this, the residents of Crimea and Sevastopol turned to Russia for help in defending their rights and lives, in preventing the events that were unfolding and are still underway in Kiev, Donetsk, Kharkov and other Ukrainian cities.

Naturally, we could not leave this plea unheeded; we could not abandon Crimea and its residents in distress. This would have been betrayal on our part.

First, we had to help create conditions so that the residents of Crimea for the first time in history were able to peacefully express their free will regarding their own future. However, what do we hear from our colleagues in Western Europe and North America? They say we are violating norms of international law. Firstly, it’s a good thing that they at least remember that there exists such a thing as international law – better late than never.

Secondly, and most importantly – what exactly are we violating? True, the President of the Russian Federation received permission from the Upper House of Parliament to use the Armed Forces in Ukraine. However, strictly speaking, nobody has acted on this permission yet. Russia’s Armed Forces never entered Crimea; they were there already in line with an international agreement. True, we did enhance our forces there; however – this is something I would like everyone to hear and know – we did not exceed the personnel limit of our Armed Forces in Crimea, which is set at 25,000, because there was no need to do so.

Next. As it declared independence and decided to hold a referendum, the Supreme Council of Crimea referred to the United Nations Charter, which speaks of the right of nations to self-determination. Incidentally, I would like to remind you that when Ukraine seceded from the USSR it did exactly the same thing, almost word for word. Ukraine used this right, yet the residents of Crimea are denied it. Why is that?

Moreover, the Crimean authorities referred to the well-known Kosovo precedent – a precedent our western colleagues created with their own hands in a very similar situation, when they agreed that the unilateral separation of Kosovo from Serbia, exactly what Crimea is doing now, was legitimate and did not require any permission from the country’s central authorities. Pursuant to Article 2, Chapter 1 of the United Nations Charter, the UN International Court agreed with this approach and made the following comment in its ruling of July 22, 2010, and I quote: “No general prohibition may be inferred from the practice of the Security Council with regard to declarations of independence,” and “General international law contains no prohibition on declarations of independence.” Crystal clear, as they say.

I do not like to resort to quotes, but in this case, I cannot help it. Here is a quote from another official document: the Written Statement of the United States America of April 17, 2009, submitted to the same UN International Court in connection with the hearings on Kosovo. Again, I quote: “Declarations of independence may, and often do, violate domestic legislation. However, this does not make them violations of international law.” End of quote. They wrote this, disseminated it all over the world, had everyone agree and now they are outraged. Over what? The actions of Crimean people completely fit in with these instructions, as it were. For some reason, things that Kosovo Albanians (and we have full respect for them) were permitted to do, Russians, Ukrainians and Crimean Tatars in Crimea are not allowed. Again, one wonders why.

We keep hearing from the United States and Western Europe that Kosovo is some special case. What makes it so special in the eyes of our colleagues? It turns out that it is the fact that the conflict in Kosovo resulted in so many human casualties. Is this a legal argument? The ruling of the International Court says nothing about this. This is not even double standards; this is amazing, primitive, blunt cynicism. One should not try so crudely to make everything suit their interests, calling the same thing white today and black tomorrow. According to this logic, we have to make sure every conflict leads to human losses.

I will state clearly – if the Crimean local self-defence units had not taken the situation under control, there could have been casualties as well. Fortunately this did not happen. There was not a single armed confrontation in Crimea and no casualties. Why do you think this was so? The answer is simple: because it is very difficult, practically impossible to fight against the will of the people. Here I would like to thank the Ukrainian military – and this is 22,000 fully armed servicemen. I would like to thank those Ukrainian service members who refrained from bloodshed and did not smear their uniforms in blood.

Other thoughts come to mind in this connection. They keep talking of some Russian intervention in Crimea, some sort of aggression. This is strange to hear. I cannot recall a single case in history of an intervention without a single shot being fired and with no human casualties.

Colleagues,

Like a mirror, the situation in Ukraine reflects what is going on and what has been happening in the world over the past several decades. After the dissolution of bipolarity on the planet, we no longer have stability. Key international institutions are not getting any stronger; on the contrary, in many cases, they are sadly degrading. Our western partners, led by the United States of America, prefer not to be guided by international law in their practical policies, but by the rule of the gun. They have come to believe in their exclusivity and exceptionalism, that they can decide the destinies of the world, that only they can ever be right. They act as they please: here and there, they use force against sovereign states, building coalitions based on the principle “If you are not with us, you are against us.” To make this aggression look legitimate, they force the necessary resolutions from international organisations, and if for some reason this does not work, they simply ignore the UN Security Council and the UN overall.

This happened in Yugoslavia; we remember 1999 very well. It was hard to believe, even seeing it with my own eyes, that at the end of the 20th century, one of Europe’s capitals, Belgrade, was under missile attack for several weeks, and then came the real intervention. Was there a UN Security Council resolution on this matter, allowing for these actions? Nothing of the sort. And then, they hit Afghanistan, Iraq, and frankly violated the UN Security Council resolution on Libya, when instead of imposing the so-called no-fly zone over it they started bombing it too.

There was a whole series of controlled “colour” revolutions. Clearly, the people in those nations, where these events took place, were sick of tyranny and poverty, of their lack of prospects; but these feelings were taken advantage of cynically. Standards were imposed on these nations that did not in any way correspond to their way of life, traditions, or these peoples’ cultures. As a result, instead of democracy and freedom, there was chaos, outbreaks in violence and a series of upheavals. The Arab Spring turned into the Arab Winter.

A similar situation unfolded in Ukraine. In 2004, to push the necessary candidate through at the presidential elections, they thought up some sort of third round that was not stipulated by the law. It was absurd and a mockery of the constitution. And now, they have thrown in an organised and well-equipped army of militants.

We understand what is happening; we understand that these actions were aimed against Ukraine and Russia and against Eurasian integration. And all this while Russia strived to engage in dialogue with our colleagues in the West. We are constantly proposing cooperation on all key issues; we want to strengthen our level of trust and for our relations to be equal, open and fair. But we saw no reciprocal steps.

To be continued…

March 18, 2014, 15:50

The Kremlin, Moscow

http://eng.kremlin.ru/news/6889

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Do You Find Business Hard or Easy?

16/06/2013

I’ll say something about what I observe about business.

People starting out for the first time with little business history of their own or in their family believe they have to do it themselves.  That they can’t trust anyone.  And they are frequently trying to

It's About Freedom

It’s About Freedom

prove something to an often dead father.  Big successful business – you define your own measures of success – is not like this.  It’s about the exact opposite.

Successful business builds a team as quickly as possible.  They give trust first and then the mistrustful will show themselves. And they appreciate and recognized their father’s contribution to their live and go about to lead their own.  It’s a heck of a lot more fun that way too!

Jeremiah Josey

 

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Is the US Oil Sector in Denial?

01/06/2013

I came across an interesting article in my email the other morning about how higher energy taxes threaten US shale boom, and I was shocked not really by the message, but by how the message was being delivered.  Being close to the oil sector myself I know that it’s a  high-profile industry and so it attracts many bright minds.  What Nathan Randazzo did with the article was use rubbish journalism, and lots of statistics to justify a totally archaic, and clearly sponsored – point of view.  Bright minds are attracted to statistics, and can be distracted by articles like Nathans.

It was simply rubbish, full of expanded overly descriptive scare tactic type journalistic sensationalist claptrap.  (Like that sentence!)World on a Tummy

The key point he pivoted his article upon was the need to keep low-cost (i.e. subsidised) energy production going because of the “rapidly expanding population in the U.S.” Hang on.  Rapidly expanding? From where? Mexico? I knew this was wrong, and a quick check shows it’s the absolute opposite: slowest growth predicted in U.S. over the next 10 years since the 1930’s Great Depression!  Only 7.3% growth predicted over this decade we are in now. It was only 7.25% between 1930 and 1940.

This was an article that throws in one liners that are obviously false and then opens sentences with “The Truth is…”!!  Abhorrent!

In addition to this the USA has the worst vehicle fuel efficiency profile of any country in the world (courtesy of studies produced by the Rocky Mountain Institute of Snowmass Colorado),  so there is lots of scope to reduce oil demand in the USA just by making vehicles more fuel efficient. Hence the price will come down.  Even less need for subsidies.

Also the USA is the second largest producer of global greenhouse gases, whilst having only 4% of the world’s population, hence placing great emphasis on “green” energy production methods. These are “high tech” industries, driving entrepreneurialism, smart thinking and advanced technologies.  That can only be a good thing for people won’t it?

My point is there is ample scope for redirecting skills, talent and resources towards better ways of producing energy without worrying about employee funded cost reduction schemes dreamed up from the turn of the 20th century (that’s 100 years ago)  – I mean tax reductions and subsidies.

Said in June 2000, by Sheikh Zaki Yamani, former Oil Minister of Saudi Arabia (1962–86), “Thirty years from now there will be a huge amount of oil—and no buyers. Oil will be left in the ground. The Stone Age came to an end, not because we had a lack of stones, and the Oil Age will come to an end not because we have a lack of oil.”

The present Saudi Oil Minister Sheikh Ali Al-Naimi recently said “We know that pumping oil out of the ground does not create many jobs. It does not foster an entrepreneurial spirit, nor does it sharpen critical faculties.”

Thanks Google.

Jeremiah Josey

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We are the Russians – Here We Come!

27/05/2013

Ever wonder about the psychology of the Russian people?

Let’s look at where they come from.

What are some headlines about Russia as a country?  (Just a few, because there are many):

Russia

Russia

  • Largest landmass on earth, and by population density, one of the least populated  – only 8 people per square kilometer.   Singapore has over 7,500 people per square kilometer.
  • With these large unpopulated spaces very generous reserves of gold, oil, coal, gas, iron, nickel, tungsten and so on, where most other countries have piles of dirt.
  • A great agricultural base – both in land and farming techniques – for production of organic food  :D

So lots of space for people, lots of space for food for the people and lots of resources for the people to work with.

And what about the people? (Also just a few points, because there are many):

  • Never conquered in over 1,000 years, with a contiguous culture throughout that time, layered with incredible fortitude built from a primarily serfdom society.
  • A recent memory war that took away 26,500,000 people concurrent with an equally recent memory regime that removed another 20,000,000 souls from the earth.  Remember that present day Russian population is only 143,000,000.
  • Within the most recent generation an entire society literally thrown onto the street as they moved from one economic system and were thrust into another.

And what is the net result. In one word: Survivors – practical, pragmatic survivors. With a whole lot of resources to apply themselves to.

One can see this in this Inglehart Value Map below.   There’s Russia: high on the upper left: High Survival values and high in Secular-Rational values: “what will it/you/they do for me now, today, not tomorrow or after?”

Inglehart Values Map

Inglehart Values Map

 Having a very high “Secular-Rational Value” means the people are very practical, very pragmatic.  They are not prone to superstition (or faith without action), though many have deep devout faiths.  Compare this to the USA, where a call to align with “traditional values” by any politician, Republican or Democratic – calling for God, or labour or liberalist idealism – will be swept into power with a rambunctious swearing of allegiances and oaths to serve – and die for no reason in strange far off lands – for God and country.  In Russia it’s simple: “show me”.

Considering the history of the Russian people, on Survival Values they rank very high also.  This makes for tenacity, perseverance, industriousness.  No room for BS please.

Lots of good potential in this combination. Driven, dedicated, results focused. A little bit of entrepreneurial training and away they will go.

Have you ever heard of Maslow and the “Hierarchy of Needs”. That helps explain what is behind the Values Map. The idea is as you sort out your base, you can rise up the pyramid to, eventually, self actualisation.

That’s a country for you – on the launch pad.

Maslows Hierarchy of Needs

Maslows Hierarchy of Needs

Jeremiah Josey

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Discussion with Kuwaiti Member of Parliament

25/05/2013

A few nights ago I met up with recently elected member of Kuwait parliament the Right Honourable Nawaf Al Fuzaia.  We discussed many things, one of which was about the prospect of doubling of the budget for the Government of Kuwait over the next 10 years.

That reminded me about C. Northcote Parkinson and his famous discussions around the same topic from the 1960’s – about what is now known as Parkinson’s Law.

To understand why Kuwait’s government budget will roughly double in the next 10 years, in summary, is because:

People, events, work, plants even, will expand to fill the space allocated to them. If there is no restraints on growth, then they will simply grow, and grow and grow.

Put more simply, Parkinson explains succinctly that in a world free of restraints, in government:

1. An official wants to multiply subordinates, not rivals,
2. Officials make work for each other.

To counter this one must place restraints.  Free Market economics works very well because businesses are profit based, so there is a natural restraint upon spending, on expenses. Therefore a business will only grow if it is needed, if it is good.  This is a vital restraint that is missing in most governments of the world: therefore a government will grow whether that growth is needed or not.

Restraints on budget (as for example, as a percentage of GDP), the number of people, limiting the value of government managed assets: these are ideas for restraints for government.  The State can still own assets, however they are privately managed and therefore profit based – this is a PPP – Public Private Partnership: a concept gaining popularity in many parts of the world.

Parkinson’s book is available online here: Parkinson’s Law

This was the general thread of some of our discussion that evening. It was a good night.

Jeremiah Josey

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Eight Principles – Participative Management

11/05/2013

This article draws from something I read recently by Joan Lancourt and Charles Savage called Organizational Transformation and the Changing Role of the Human Resource Function

What is participative management?

I call it the humanising style of management that I advocate and endorse. Most of my articles describe different aspects of it. The ultimate result is that we treat each other as adults, with sincerity, focus and honesty.

It is also a style of management that works.

It’s an open form of management where employees have strong decision-making roles. Participative management can be developed by owners, CEOs and management teams who strive to actively seek a strong cooperative relationship with their employees: their “co-workers” or “associates”. The advantages of participative management include increased productivity, improved quality, and reduced costs. Expansion of the groups activities and their successes is only limited by their imagination.

Beware however, as it is also a buzz word given lip service by companies appear egalitarian to their stakeholders. So if you have great work environment, and you want to shout out about it, have a third party such as WorldBlu endorse it.

Traci Fenton at WorldBlu lists the criteria in a very concise way, so I suggest heading on over to her site and checking it out. If your company is like this, then be listed by WorldBlu. Your employees will love the recognition and it will help your business in all the areas I discuss here.

Here are some companies very well engaged with participative management:

Joan Lancourt and Charles Savage studied these eight companies and their work makes for interesting reading.

There are eight core principles that two of the companies, W.L. Gore and Oticon developed, however they are in use by all companies that engage in participatory management to varying degrees.

These first four principles are from the company W.L. Gore Incorporated:

1. The Freedom Principle encourages associates to grow in knowledge, skill, and scope of responsibility.

2. The Waterline Principle states that mistakes, which are inevitable in any dynamic organization, “above the waterline” are not a serious offence. However, mistakes “below the water line” can sink the ship. Therefore, before taking a serious risk, associates need to check with other key people.

3. The Commitment Principle indicates that associates are expected to keep any commitments they make.

4. The Fairness Principle mandates that associates be fair to everyone else, including suppliers and customers.

Leadership at Gore is not positional; it is expected of everyone, and a natural leader is defined by his or her followers.

Malcolm Gladwell says this in his piece The Tipping Point says this: Small group peer pressure is much more powerful than the concept of a boss (page 186).

That is why this works. We love to belong to a successful group and our peers are quite to point out when we are not pulling our weight.

(By the way, Malcolm also covers these points which further describe why participatory management can be so successful: Law of the Few, the Stickiness Factor, and the Power of Context. I won’t cover them here, suffice to say organisations that apply them do exceptionally well).

The next four principles come from Oticon, where their set of core values to guide the work of the company emerged after hundreds of hours of discussion. These values supplanted the previous formal structures and formed the framework for the four operating principles which guide the transformed organization:

5. The Choice Principle states that employees may choose their projects and are also free to determine what training they need, their vacation schedules, and their working hours.

6. The Multijob Principle requires everyone to work on a project outside his or her area of prime competence. This is based on the assumption that “a top chip designer who performs a marketing function in one project becomes a much better chip designer. . . . because he sees the world stereophonically.”

7. The Transparency Principle promises that with almost no exceptions, every piece of information is available to everyone. The agility, integration, and alignment that result from this policy far outweigh any risk associated with openness.

8. The No Controls Principle means that projects emerge based on opportunity, need, and interest. Skunk works are common and, although there is a strategic plan, it is not interpreted rigidly.

Here are some other points raised by Lancourt and Savage with their work:

 In considering how to make the company a national player, Ralph Stayer of Johnsonville Foods came to realize that by keeping people dependent on him for leadership and decisions, he, not the employees, was the source of the problem. He likened the situation to that of a buffalo herd in which the herd simply follows the lead buffalo anywhere – even over a cliff. In contrast to the buffalo, in a flock of geese, each goose is responsible for getting itself to the flock’s destination. When the lead goose gets tired, another goose moves forward to take its place, assuring a fast and steady pace. To help Johnsonville Foods transform itself from a herd of unquestioning followers to a more empowered community, Stayer stopped merely delegating work and instead transferred ownership of the customer relationships to the organizational members.

At Semco, the leadership baton rotates every six months among the six “counselors” in an effort to void what other companies get stuck with -responsibility nailed down to a single man or woman. At Semco there’s no one to blame if the company goes down the drain. When financial performance is one person’s problem, then everyone else can relax. You get to pass on the baton, but it comes back again two-and-a-half years later.

Oticon and Semco have found that by openly sharing all information, including financial and salary information, with everyone, the company creates the alignment necessary to maintain order without having to impose controls from the top. This emphasis on shared values and widely available information brings us to a fourth theme: the way in which organizations have altered the language they use.

At Johnsonville Foods, the role of supervisor has been defined as that of “coordinator,” and the role of manager has become that of “coach.” At Oticon, managers are now “leaders” and “sponsors,” and “sponsorship” at W.L. Gore is also an important role. At Semco, the six senior executives have become “counselors,” and department heads are “partners.”

There you have it. A start at least anyway. Put it into practice and let your own groups’ style and community standards influence the result.

Jeremiah Josey

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Do It Daily!

25/01/2013

Bathing daily, eating daily, sleeping daily. Daily is the greatest gift we have to change our lives. Just by changing what we do a little each day means we can change the course of our lives over a life time. Yoga daily, meditation daily, fresh healthy foods daily, positive uplifting people, conversations, events, circumstances, daily. These steer the way to what ever life you want. Do it today.

Image

Jeremiah Josey

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