Alpha men story

A leader narrates:

At some point during the session ‘name’ said something like: we would never act like this at ‘name company’. But we all knew: yes we do! Everyone was watching it happening but nobody spoke up! This is…hierarchy isn’t it? A bit like that monkey rock: well if the boss says so we might think different but eh… we better shut up about it. That is, like our culture; a little macho. If someone higher up then you takes a stand and says “we will not do this” you do not say “yes but I really I totally disagree, mate”. I suppose in the past…. People feel such an attitude does not take you any further in this company. Maybe it’s not fair but there is very little believe in being honest…

But if you would ask your manager, they of course reply that “of course I am totally open to remarks and opinions”. Well it really does not work like that, it is not the culture here and its logical. We need to be strong, take instant decisions and we are focussed on acting instead of talking, so I understand it and do not want to lose that either. But one has to be open to other people’s opinion. Of course in the end there has to be someone to make the rules but you do not have to lose acting power because you are a little more open. At the same time we are so used to protect our own little kingdom so we are like: oh man just let it rest, I will do it in my own way. In a project your attitude to the owner is: I will do it my way. And his attitude towards the board is: yeah it is ok man, this is how it goes. So you think: I am not going to fight this. It will only add a bad mark to my name and eventually I will get punished, so just leave it.

And you do the same again in your own little kingdom. You feel to be different but if you ask for feedback, I am sure to get the same answer, I am not sure. We now have this cooperation programme and people come to me about my own approachability because “I am not sure if I am welcome here”. But my door is always open, I reply. But it is your attitude… Apparently there is something in my attitude that says: what are you doing here man, just piss off! It is deeply rooted into the organization. And also in the way we are organized. I am working all over the world so when I am in Australia or Singapore someone can jump high and low but I am in charge. Of course you try to anticipate but you know, manoeuvring a little… that’s what we are good at, manoeuvring with the flow…

Back