Posts By: Harold Jarche

narcissists at work

The following series of tweets by @HoarseWisperer is an incredibly good examination of how people with narcissistic personality disorder (NPD) control those who work for them. I am sure many of us have witnessed similar behaviours in toxic workplaces. Naming and understanding these behaviours can help us deal with them. I have expanded some abbreviations… Read more »

What is innovation?

In writing almost 100 posts on innovation since 2007, it’s time to put the core observations together into a cohesive narrative. Here goes. Innovation is fifteen different things to fifteen different people. “An innovation is the implementation of a new or significantly improved product (good or service), or process, a new marketing method, or a… Read more »

three pillars of leadership

“Hierarchical authority is much more effective at securing compliance than it is in fostering genuine commitment.” —Peter Senge Senge and his team have identified three types of leadership in organizations. Local level — to experiment Executives — to support local level & model behaviour Networkers — to make connections between people Leadership today is all… Read more »

meetings, bloody meetings

My introduction to organizing meetings was in the military, where different types of meetings had standard structures. The Orders Format was something any officer could recite from memory. During officer training we were shown the 1976 John Cleese film, which was updated in 1993 — Meetings, Bloody Meetings. Cleese, a manager, is convicted in a… Read more »

movements and rackets

Every fortnight I curate some of the observations and insights that were shared on social media. I call these Friday’s Finds. “Every great cause begins as a movement, becomes a business, and eventually degenerates into a racket.” ―Eric Hoffer, The Temper of Our Time @EskoKilpi — “When managers think about diversity they typically look for… Read more »

“the strategic and purposeful production of ignorance”

“You will not achieve an informed public simply by making sure that high quality content is publicly available and presuming that credibility is enough while you wait for people to come find it. You have to understand the networked nature of the information war we’re in, actively be there when people are looking, and blanket… Read more »

workers are already mature

“Growth is not linear and it doesn’t happen in discrete phases marked by convenient external characteristics” — which is why maturity models are wrong — according to Christiaan Verwijs, specifically looking at agile models. “Of course, maturity models are meant to simplify the complexities of reality. But what is gained by squeezing such a messy,… Read more »

beyond the solutions at hand

“There is a need to deal with the problem independent of the solutions at hand. We have a tendency to define the problem in terms of the solutions we already have. We fail most often not because we fail to solve the problem we face, but because we fail to face the right problem. Rather… Read more »

learning with complexity

Two technologies — machine learning, and the internet — are changing our understanding of the world by showing that we really cannot understand large scale complexity. “We don’t use these technologies because they are huge, connected, and complex. We use them because they work. Our success with these technologies — rather than the technologies themselves — is showing us… Read more »

changing structures

“For the first time since the industrial revolution, organizations are changing at a fundamental level. The change is very much a work in progress in most organizations. But we now have many examples of organizations that are fully functioning in an entirely new way — that is, new ideas about how the organization is designed,… Read more »