Director, Arbinger Israel
I remember clearly the first time I read Leadership & Self Deception. The ideas made so much sense, in every aspect of life, and they were presented so clearly and simply. After participating in my first workshop, I felt that I knew it all and that it was now up to me to fix everyone else.
Sadly, it took me almost 7 years to realize how I’d got it all wrong.
When our firstborn joined my wife and I as a couple, we instantly evolved and became a family. Similarly, when my wife and I got married, we instantly evolved into being a couple. Whether these insights seem obvious or not, I think they are critical to our lives; at home, at work, in our communities and beyond. Although we grow up and live in families and work in organizations, most of us end up developing an inward mindset to some extent, leading us to believe “It’s all about me”. We can see it around us all the time—the emphasis we place on our self-image and personal interests, how we promote ourselves and our own agendas. And the implications and costs of the inward mindset are horrendous.
After pondering for a while how my life evolved into becoming a member of a family, I realized that it’s actually all about we. Don’t get me wrong, I still exist and my needs and wishes are important as well—it’s just that we means everyone, including me. To use Arbinger language, this perspective is aligned with the outward mindset, and the implications and outcomes of this mindset are immense.
Think about your workplace and family in terms of we. What would it look and feel like? What would you be able to achieve?
In organizations, this notion of we from an outward mindset is not just a notion, but a real way of working, enabling all to focus on helping one another achieve shared goals to get results. At our yearly conference, I always learn more how the outward mindset perfectly fits every country, culture, and type of organization. While people in different countries tend to connect to the material in slightly different ways, or need minor tweaks in delivery, they all internalize it the same. Cultures are different and requires some adaptations in facilitation, but since Arbinger deals with mindset, our ideas and tools works anywhere because people are always people. We always in relationship with each other, no matter where we live, what our culture consists of, which language we use, and what our goals are.