Monthly Archives: March 2014

Egos and Paranoia in Ukraine

Russia-Crimea You are probably aware of the situation. Vladimir Putin exercises his power, political judgement and ego. Russia with some military posturing assists Crimea in annexing itself from Ukraine and then legislates to join Russia. This follows public turmoil in Ukraine following years of economic malaise and rule by an increasingly oppressive and pro-Russian government.  The newly installed Ukraine Government rejects the annexing and defies Russia by looking to the west – the EU and NATO. That has to upset Russia. The Nato alliance and the UN complain about Russia’s behavior and threaten to implement economic sanctions particularly against wealthy Russian government officials. A simplified class analysis of whose at the big table making the decisions in this drama could be enlightening as to what happens next and as a way of seeing through a lot of detail.

The question is what classes of people are represented in the political class and those making the decisions? In Russia Putin and the key decision makers come from the Military Class (include police and any state secret service in this class as they act as the intellectual arm).  This class can get a bit paranoid. Is my army bigger than your army? Is NATO encroaching on our territory? It can also feed Nationalism (Whose team are you on? If you’re not with us then you’re against us.) They would generally prefer to have a fairly direct approach to a problem. When a military class is in ascendency then it is common practice to use the tools available as political instruments. These tools include media control (propaganda), prisons, physical intimidation and violence. Continue reading

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March 18, 2014 · 10:36 am

Innovate – If You Have Permission

Innovation (Innovative): The successful application of a new and or improved method or technology to meet a requirement, articulated or not.  What leaders want more of, while rationing the permission to do it.  Also, a term that will appear, and be used somewhere within a job description, job application, and an interview – probably more than once.  The scale of innovation will not defined. It may be incrementally small or transformationally large.  A ‘large‘ innovation is likely to lead to a waterfall of smaller innovations. Mimicry is a common form of innovation – applying a  known idea but in a new setting. Mimicry is almost hard-wired into us and is one of our earliest learning strategies.

Failed innovation will optionally be referred to as a lesson or just as likely, reckless experimentation, incompetence, unnecessary risk-taking or some other term that can be career limiting. Risk taking is inherent to most innovations.

It is not unusual for innovations to be occurring in an organisation or even a society without people paying too much attention. Continue reading

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Filed under Change Management, Corporate Culture & Strategy