Asymmetrical social factors (refers to disproportionate) factors that influence strategy at all levels; they are all practices that we have, and practice in order to belong to a certain social norm or code of conduct, that influence our views and decision making. We become social around the planning table, and then so too do our customs and cultural rules apply…
These norms of social conduct also differ from one place to the next; home, work, church, sport, the club, and then it also extends into culture etc.
We all prescribe to a certain set of rules, codes, norms, practices, beliefs, principles and in the absence thereof to cultural norms, beliefs and practice. Combined these aspects form the “asymmetrical social factors”.
We don’t function outside of any realm of social influence, like a maverick, free from prejudice, influence, or bias, no, on the contrary we feed from one or even many social inputs; media, friends, education, culture, piers, parents, dogma, belief, all social sources, and this aspect informs perceptions we have on how to do things.
“With strategy everything connects with everything else”, subsequently, we need to understand more about what else is out there that directly influences our strategy.
Starting with ourselves
We measure our actions and that of others through social norms and codes
People tend to measure themselves and also others by their own set of standards, called virtue.
Morals, Ethics and Virtue
Morals vs. ethics, there’s no change match between these two terms, but there is a distinction: Although the words could be considered synonyms, the distinction is this; morals are beliefs based on practices or teachings regarding how people should conduct themselves in personal relationships and in society, while ethics refers to a set or system of principles, rules, norms, practices and or a philosophy.
Virtue is a morally desirable character trait then; a way to measure up in society, to be liked, loved, and appreciated, a way towards living a good life.
Individual virtues are morally desirable character traits like; courage, resilience, self-restraint, honesty, humility, caring, self-sacrificing etc.
Intelligence and emotion on the other hand leans to giving substance to this moral character, the ability to be sympathetic and empathetic is labelled as good social behaviour, having a social conscience, a moral compass. It becomes a way of getting everyone to live in harmony, whilst pursuing your own objectives. It then becomes a character trait or culture, of that community, group or persons when practiced as a norm.
Strategy also has deep cultural ties, every culture attacks problems in a different fashion, traditionally speaking, we don’t all subscribe to one set rule, as a rule, to do our strategy with, from one culture to the next, we attack strategy radically different in mind set.
Strategy as a science is still a long way in the making; in normal terms strategy does not necessarily imply; structure, policy or even procedure to most “strategist”, they also see no reference to making social ties to their strategy either, and therefore abandon the reasoning attributes of strategy altogether, writing it off as not being strategic attributes of strategy altogether; they just focus purely on the basic recipe; vision, mission, goals, and objective.
We all bring our best and worst to the planning table
Then these seemingly “insignificant” attributes of social bias, eludes them, these are then some aspects I would like to cast some light on, the first is the “pique effect”.
The word pique points to sudden change of mind, or mood that people can experience. First setting the Mood for new strategy is a good launching platform.
We have all been called to strategic sessions, big and small, from when you were your young, then mom explained her system of keeping your room tidy, to the first boys night out “hunting”, all excited. Then with time, we realised, that strategy equates to work. Then strategy became an alarm bell, like a fire alarm, when we hear it we evacuate and make distance, and we don’t understand why?
Where feelings we experience; either good or bad, positive or negative, dependant on the stimulation, starts triggering a brand new experience; it will overtime become an association whenever we get to experience such a stimulus. We associate a certain mood, with certain words as we grow older. For some the word strategy is challenging, for others its work.
Mood describes a polarised reaction to a stimulus, or trigger, of an emotional kind mostly, it will split or divide people, where that specific conditions can trigger within us great emotion, that gets us to react impulsive (automatic/ irrational/without thinking) in certain situations, or awakens our senses and we focus ardently.
The general meaning of pique implies to become very angry or annoyed or very happy and rejoicing. But when something piques your interest or curiosity, here then the verb piqué means to arouse, to stimulate, or excite someone. (Taken from the French, piquer implies “to prick.” So you can see how something “prickly” could make you either very excited or extremely frustrated.)
How much though goes into these “little” aspects, of how people connect to ideas, to make them work? No idea can be sold to people if the social norms and practices are not followed; you have to get people into the mood. This mood swing today is called Innovation! That of selling and launching new and even old ideas in new ways, strategy is all about selling big ideas, to become future strategies, and knowing how do we “prick” people, to get them positive and excited, over and over again, and not angry and annoyed, we have all experienced this I am sure.
We go to a strategic session, all pumped, and then, one person makes one remark, and then all hell breaks loose, all cohesion is lost, do we filter this aspect consciously? Therefore, it has become very important to have balanced inputs on strategy formulation and execution, especially when we are dealing with mixed cultures, race, and genders; it could also extend to people with differing agendas, languages and or diversified views on politics. One needs to be sensitive to these aspects as they have become political, therefore social attributes of society, and people can become very sensitive, and then swing the mood.
All these aspects can form barriers to communication and interpretation of the work to be done…and whatever follows. How we connect people with ideas, through the use of strategy, becomes more an exercise in understanding human dynamics and social rituals and rules, than what it is academic and calculated firstly – this follows on…
Strategy balances its life on the social mood…if people are all in the mood, strategy will flourish, if not it will die a slow painful death.
Humans were designed and hardwired to derive from their social context, its moral content…and clues for social interaction
Now we get to the fun part; social attribution; now in psychology, our political views, our moral law and our outlook on life is almost completely influenced by how we, and with whom we socially attribute (hang out with), “people know you by your friends”, “like needs like”.
Social associations we have or keep, are not to be taken likely, or lightly, it’s a way of connecting things to us or not, all the key things that affect the way in which we think, and therefore react to our external environment, just because of our perceptions and bias we create, or have, because of social ties, the pressures of peer pressure, education, religion, norms, morals, ethics and culture, all combined makes for a potent cocktail of influence in our lives, and therefor thinking.
Your actions are always the results of your thoughts. The quality of your strategy is most likely determined by your thoughts you entertain and your future is consequently affected by the actions that you take now, so frequently think and act with your preferred future in mind. Think cause and effect… if I cause this to happen what would be the effect?
By Definition: Our Social attribution is a process through which people try to explain how/ and why they behave and appear to do things “wrong”, especially in terms of their motivation/ justification for doing it, contra to the principles of right, wrong, fair and just…I did this because in my circles I move its condoned.
Critical thinking is strategic thinking, a way to actively become divorced form social attribution…
Critical thinking and strategy is not synonymous, although it should be. Just how much though really goes in to our strategic thinking, the thinking about thinking (critical thinking then) should also become strategic – planned?
Should this aspect alone, not warrant huge debate, and research. For everything we do, see, eat, smell, hear, taste, and experience has a connection to thinking and therefore impact directly on strategy too. Not just the economic and business factors we cling to, society as a whole will direct your strategy today.
Thinking strategic or strategy should become a mission critical process; which should not just be about following abstract academical principles either, the likes of; vision, mission, and gaols, it should also ardently focus on the agendas of the people involved, the social environment it will exist in and how this will concern them, and later affect others, this should also become key performance areas when setting the plan.
This favour of only or mostly concerning strategy with external over internal influences can simply be put down to the roots of our western culture’s business philosophy…
If strategist are to think different about their companies and how they compete, then they must think different about strategy itself. It makes no sense to use old weapons in a new war. But face the facts, yesterday’s dynamic formula might be today’s surest way to disaster – Manning 1998:134
Strategy is not as complex as what it is progressive
“As we start so shall we finish” someone once said? The start of any strategy is 2/3 the plot. This is where most people miss the bus. Strategy by its very nature is always progressive first; in other words; it starts very small, as an idea, then evolves as we and the strategy evolve – (or should) and so too must the theory, and presumptions we use, to design it with.
Therefore, if we grow with our strategies, and design systems, policy, and procedure, it will never become too complex to manage, understand and grow.
However, this brings us to strategic alignment; this aspect should now become the forerunner to our strategic planning too it seems, we are now looking at adding a step before the vision is born.
More and more ingredients are going into making strategy today than ever before, both as a rule, and a consequence of our ever and fast changing world.
If it is true that perceptions influence our focus, and everything we focus on subsequently, then we need to look at perception management?
Strategic alignment today starts from the word go, where we align perceptions, assumptions, and politics first, as well as our social attributes with the gaols we have for our vision, mission, and not the other way around when the unions and co-workers stone wall the process halfway through, the we hurry to incorporate the internal influences on strategy, and crowbar it all out of proportion, just to get a fit. Only sound strategic – therefore critical reasoning should suffice nothing more nothing less.
Forces acting on each other
Critical reason resides on the premise of evaluation and then facts, followed by a risk assessment and then exploring and testing possible solutions.
However; a variety of factors influence a strategist’s choice of strategy. Many of these factors are internal to the entity – factors such as the entity’s present resources, capabilities, capacity and knowledge curve.
Many other factors, however, arise outside of the entity. Strategic management texts generally classify the key external forces confronting an entity into five broad categories:
· Political, governmental and legal forces;
· Economic forces;
· Social, cultural and demographic forces;
· Technological forces;
· Competitive forces.
However, very few consider the internal environment and its potential risk to the strategy as a key aspect of strategy formulation.
If not for pre- alignment, SWAT assessments, and environmental scans, we could be in for deep trouble, then it’s all eyes on basics, all the outside influences on strategy; just following the business assumptions, and sober business wisdom, with some compliance, and mitigation added, if so, then it skews our focus, all these attributes are high on the action item list towards strategy design still yes, however. Today strategy even gets taxed under the ethical and moral “scorecard” – that of “the moral law”.
Strategy has now also become an exercise in negotiating the ethical and moral, the cultural and political, and then the green living rhetoric
Strategy as a planning tool is still rudimentary (or very basic), we can apply any combination of basics strategic principles over and over, or add in or subtract on just about any concept of planning, and it will work – to varying degrees of course. This is the beauty of strategy, its tailor made charter.
However, the strategist today, needs to align his people first, so that they come with one mind set, one mood, and find one game plan, before we dive into strategy, the playing field needs to be level. If this is all true, how can one miss with the likes of; vision, mission, goals, and objectives some still believe that this is the total strategic concept.
Not so, it’s the “mix” we add, to give plans strength, that defines our strategy – leadership character and systems gives strategy longevity, this one small aspect sets strategic minds apart from normal planning, and this is where it gets very interesting, at the point where emotion, conviction, and long negotiations and introspection emerge; between doing it right, versus doing the right thing with it, the mix between principles to be followed, and the moral, ethical, and political side of it. Strategy is never without out consequence…it either fails, or fly’s because of…one, two, or three…little things we missed.
It happens so often today that it’s just not funny or fun anymore, and will happen more and more often than not…strategy has now also become politically infused, with seniors wanting to take every opportunity to show how great they are, by starting off with lots of speech making. This aspect by the way is a sure-fire way to get the pique effect going… the wrong way?
General social and strong political views as well as perceptions have become part of the strategic “mix-up”; all that we are and add to make a strategy is the sum of our collective energy; never think your mind, your thinking, and consequently your strategy is immune to these or any external influence of others perceptions, rhetoric and thoughts – politically inspired agendas, or even personal agendas or both. Every strategy serves an agenda – that connects to other bigger agendas. You would do well to remember that…
A critical look at how political ideology becomes infused in strategy is essential.
Just by creating a greater awareness of these social aspects on strategy, creates better alignments for us at all levels, knowledge is power, now we suddenly realise it’s there – awareness makes us cautious, then we see it’s actually everywhere, and very significant.
Just by looking at how political ideology is spreading today and how this “small” aspect has “tainted” strategy formulation already, we can predict with more certainty that it will start infiltrating strategist mind-sets at the academic level too, then it becomes significant enough to just look at some aspects of it, more critically, and even cynically.
Because politics polarises people around a certain viewpoint that promotes certain aspects more than others – that informs and prescribes other significant shaping aspects of strategy to follow.
So the bright-eyed guy walking through the door, fully qualified with his NBA is already pro something? I guarantee Liberal…
(When I am talking liberal here – I am not referring to the United Sates political party affiliations here please – just a way of describing a mind-set prone to unrestricted freedoms for all).
The education system teaches liberal thinking
Liberal views are sold out; everything old, tried and tested must go. And this idea is now universal, spreading fast with new forms of democracy all over the globe, converting every continent – one at a time – (almost like the crusades of old) to the democratic, and thus liberal way of life, a strategy in itself btw.
Political views are powerful catalyst to viewing the world and how it should be. This impacts directly on any part of a design element, people will tend to shape it to fit this vision, thus creating its own challenges and problems. In short, with a change in political direction, many facets of business will have to change, and it has a knock-on effect, that ripples to every corner imaginable.
A new (Political) religion has been created
Strategy everywhere, who, what, where, when how, how much, of it do we need to take into account. We are looking at grand strategy like never before.
The world is becoming smaller, east and west will meet soon. North and south has. This modern war is called – “Social re-engineering of the world” – all societies are persuaded and couched to become liberal, and then democratic, and is spearheaded by international organisations, and governments, so our little strategy must connect or should to the bigger agenda, if we hope for it to survive. Strategies connect through people, society and what they say it should be.
Let’s analyse this grand strategy for a few seconds
By spreading this new political religion, who has the most to gain? Will it be for the greater good as it is sold now? Is this even wise, did we check to make sure that this one size religion will fit all, is this sustainable at least, if on a macro, or even global scale? What is the cause and effect of this, especially in the long run?
Remember, any conformity comes at a very high price, just ask the Romans, the antonym to conformity is rebellion btw, and we only conform when there is a substantial reward or benefit, makes you think what the future has in store for us?
The problem with having global conquests is we have many liberals that will take responsibility, we are all free to do what we like, and in the way we like…so go figure…
Then for any democracy to truly prevail, or become sustainable, certain conditions need to exist; democracy can be steered left or right, there’s no middle ground, when liberals governing then we go left it seems, and then free will needs to prevail. When conservatives govern, we go right; here rules are enforced, without fear or favour, people have few rights. People actually get punished for bad behaviour, and you will be held accountable…for sure.
Utopia is one wrong turn away from chaos – need we be reminded?
Freedom without real morality, and some discrimination breeds contempt…contempt is a funny thing, it’s like oil on a stove, it takes a very long time to burn, but when we add water to cool it down, it explodes into one big fire ball, and then it’s all over.
The first ever form of morality given onto us as laws, were cast in stone, and we can’t even practice these well. We weren’t given the Ten Commandments so that we can be free? It’s in our nature to be wild and uncontrollable; to take what you wanted and liked and gratify one-self is a human instinct.
This then breeds that one thing that broke the butterflies back, insignificant minds, leading mobs. We all accept democracy without even giving it a thought, democracy means classlessness – a close match to communism, so we can make room for them too – then it also appeals to the masses, they prefer the opposite, where things need to be done with consensus, oh boy this sounds like fun! The thing about consensus is this, it takes lots of time, and people consent today, only to withdraw tomorrow, back and forth, very little gets done in this fashion.
So we have no one self-determining structure, no wonder nothing much gets done in a democracy? If structure still has to follow strategy how will you support this strategy with a functioning structure, and make it work? When our political systems are controlled by everyone’s inputs, then we go left and then right, and then left, left- left, and then right – right… I don’t know if that’s the fastest way between two points, firstly, I was always of the opinion that the shortest distance between two points is still a straight line? So we might need a more strategic form of politics to government in the near future as well?
So we don’t follow sound reasoning as governments either, neither strategic and or mathematical principles, or even business principles on the bigger scale of things it seems, when managing global things; that of optimizing resources use, and minimizing waste – it’s all just chitter-chatter – especially when we decide on how to govern ourselves, and our own resources – and the rest of the worlds with one single strategy – that seems to be none existent as we speak – very scary, to think that government is not run like a business or is it?
Society is also not one thing it has tiers
So with class, or classification, come certain benefits and also privilege, and those privilege run down the pyramid, if not for that some believe we would have had less jobs, less quality products, fewer services etc..(A discussion for a next blog post), no democracy aims at having classes, but I see quite the opposite of the liberal view emanating still? We see the super-rich, and the poor at the ends of the spectrum.
So now I had poked enough fun with politics, and the liberal minded must be steaming, the point I wanted to make here was this; that no matter what you were taught in the class room, by the big wigs, the reality of the matter is this that strategy at the business level is subservient to greater social pressures, political structures, big business, and then culture. However, we now also have social norms and trends impacting on strategy at all levels.
Branding a strategy does not specifically imply it is what it says it is, democracy looks the same at every country’s doorstep, but enter and you will see, they have vastly differing approaches, and practices to manage their democracy with, this aspect is attributed to the social demographic and landscape.
So political will has the power to blind nations, to get everyone to conform to routine, to live in denial, and to just do the right things…practice your virtues and live a moral good life??? But is that doing the thing right?
How much more at the grass roots level then, where our strategy needs to connect to the outside world, to fix our problems, and create growth? These outside miss alignments of the bigger strategic objectives competing, impact on our strategies, and the forces they create at some point somehow, somewhere will impact on us, and our own agendas and strategy.
It does get even more complex
Then we also face the challenge of global complexity, caused by natural attributes changing, like weather, or climate change, declining natural resources, shortage of energy, social and environmental design and social disorder (crime), food shortage, rising unemployment, war, drought, disasters, banking systems, global economics and now also moral decay.
Sure, you will sort this under economics, or climate, etc. However, these changes also change the way they will do business in the future, as change is upon them they will change most aspects of their own national, and then corporate strategy to survive. So even if we are dealing with a democratic country, to sell or buy from, after a major disaster, the strategic landscape could change drastically in many ways.
This sounds like fried pork, well in the light of climate change and global disasters becoming more and more frequent and devastating, you would do well to at least consider such an anomaly when making strategy that connects on a global scale?
As the world grows smaller, so too, will our expectations not grow bigger?
Our kids are showing a lower level of intelligence – or getting dumber and dumber, with every new generation, studies show how certain nations are becoming dumber and other smarter; there will be a few expectations some believe. But when we adopt true democracy, education – free of course – then if it is free it has no value. So why put effort into getting any free education? If there is no jobs, and the government pays welfare?
Nothing really changes
As the world grows smaller, and eventually totally interlocking, it will also become more complex some estimate; the rich will plunder and corrupt the poor, everything will be “cloak and dagger” – war will make place for “clean politics” – and so will borders disappear, no more culture, land, or distinctive traits, we have to become more competitive in our own individual ways, just to survive. So culture and country will disappear too some believe…
A few good men
Now if we aren’t willing to make the hard choices now, and acknowledge these harsh realities we are facing, and so too force our leaders to stay the course, then at some point in the future uneducated mobs will make them for us, until we make those hard decisions again; it’s going to come to a “kill or be killed” a real situation eventually, and in some developed country’s its evident already, discriminate or be eradicated soon – when blood starts flowing in the streets, the rules change, then the predator within us will also have a say again, no matter how liberal, moral, or virtuous we have become, blood, makes people act and react in curious ways, it’s a reality twister.
But liberal democratic governments practice clean politics
Clean politics is a war of attrition, a very slow way of sucking all the tanks dry, until we reach empty. “Clean strategy (government) has got nothing to do with morals, or ethics, it just means that no blood will flow.
That we will also be testing our constitution and moral fibre at the same time; this is true, as we become bigger, faster and smarter nations, enterprises, and entity’s, we will have to risk more, stretch ourselves more, bend the rules more, and then still even more, just because we will want and need more to sustain, no need to stay stagnant and content, expand, and live without self-constraint, we are free, liberal remember, and we therefore stand at the eve of an experiment in unconstrained living, on how to get more of the cake, when there is nothing left, where do we go then?
Herein rests the trap – everything has limits, even if we are free, everything else in nature, and the universe has set limitations – so how far is far enough, how much is just too much of free, or freedom, what are the constraints we impose on our own will, and to our own strategic landscape and personal resolve, and to what ends and means are we willing go to protect ourselves and our family from a globally structured strategic designed implosion or Utopia no one can say for sure?
We are/ were worried about the end of days, and nothing ever came, doomsday is a self-designed strategic plot. In order to sustain the elite’s lifestyle; entrenched in culture and economy we have grown accustomed too, we have to know our limits too? Only a more conservative outlook can anchor this aspect. As it prescribes to a code of discipline that speaks to all the aforementioned attributes of self-restraint some believe, others believe that you only live once, make it count? So who is to say, who’s right or wrong – in a democracy?
These are the strategic social questions that will have to be answered and soon…
Will the next World War be about energy, sustainable resources, oil, or clean water and air? Or about morals and virtues, freedoms, etc.?
Alternatively, about reinstating a structure of moral law, integrity, and self-discipline?
How will our “civilised” society deal with these and other challenges when we have no more borders, no more restraints, or limitations on them anymore, when they are all totally free to each go into their own direction, and account to no body.
We all want rights and freedom, but we are not all prepared to look at the final consequence and take responsibility and accountability, are we then still free, what happens when even governments don’t respect others rights, and violate the moral and ethical code, who will then stand up and point to the villain and actually do something about it?
Oh whom am I kidding, it’s happening already and has for some time now, we will turn a blind eye and play the blame card, then the denial card, then the victim card, and then get out of jail free, and then sudden death, until we have no cards left? The big cover-up…some are more free that others, animal farm comes to mind.
These Predator traits that developed within us over many decades, prescribe to a discipline and order that set the survival of the species apart from others because of it, it dictates how radical we will get with strategy…and the clan, when our livelihood becomes threatened. Then a moral code should step in…
In the absence of real discipline it become rough-and-tumble, everyone for themself. Remember governments can’t function, if citizens don’t have food, and money, then nothing has value…
Our predator’s traits come from our forefathers who hunted, killed, and even slaughtered animals for the pot, and tribe, in a disciplined fashion. Some were gathers, others hunters, some both.
Any which way, they all developed a feeding strategy in this fashion. Feeding strategy is the pinnacle strategy for all predators; the rest of their strategies connect…
This is why the human species and most if not all predators species, occupy the top echelon on the pyramid of evolution.
Apex species are very distinctive from grass eaters for instance, much more intelligent, they can problem solve – all because of their ability to hunt, and or gather and therefore they all strategize. Every person is born with this ability.
We can see what is to come only if we choose it
From cavemen to businessmen, not much has changed, we still strategize.
The requirement of foresight, the ability to predict where the next meal will come from, where it will move to, where it will be by the time they moved, when the best time to hunt is etc. Takes lots of skill sets, experience, and calculations before we go into any hunt, or ambush, it takes lots of co-ordination, co-operation, to do this with the rest of the pack.
You need to be aggressive to be a good hunter, we have less aggressive people today…
With our Predators traits highly developed we also produce more testosterone, because we eat meat, or high quality protein. This also makes us more aggressive and stronger. Consequently also more violent even…the higher the testosterone the more impulsive and aggressive the predator tends to be.
Animals will sort out hierarchies by fighting for the leadership position and this naturally means competition also for mates, resources, and territory, it has transcended to man, we have engaged in competition and war right throughout our evolutionary history, this has to do with size, strength, dominance, survival of the species, and growing our survival strategy, and now also our own evolution coupled to our intelligence is hardwired to do whatever it takes when the cards are down, in order to survive.
So the more aggressive out there, will get more socially, and even economically, they have become the alpha males of old, and people will follow them, and do their bidding. Not always a good thing. As we see more and more bullies out there, not only on the school grounds, but all over the strategic landscape. Everything we do, design and create has a consequence.
Intelligence also has bearing on this, our social strategy
Actually, less intelligent people are better at doing most things in a collective or group structure some studies suggest. However, they also recon that it’s the more intelligent ones, that solve resource and greater problems best, and who come with breakthroughs – wow, it took a study to prove this?
“In the ancestral environment general intelligence was helpful only for solving a handful of evolutionarily new problems. The rest was solved by individuals…with higher intelligence.”
So we still know squat about who needs to make the hard decisions yet, based on study.
General intelligence is an all-round favourite
General intelligence – or common sense – has become very important in modern life, for its becoming un-common, we are literally losing basic skills in society, and replacing them with new ones, all because our environment is changing, it has almost entirely evolved and therefore become completely new (Compared to the environment of just 20 years back).
General intelligence also prescribes to moral law; things like wisdom, sincerity, generosity, courage and rigorousness.
Most of the problems that we have to solve today requires aspects of intelligence; networking, self-discipline and how to excel in school, how to find jobs, socialising to find and make friends, find a mate, how to do virtually everything on a computer—it’s all new, and still changing.
So the more intelligent people do well in almost every sphere of modern life, except for the most important things, like how to find a mate, how to raise a child, how to make friends, and socialise. They suffer emotionally and it also manifest physically.
We all understand that schooling and further education raises the intellect, it develops the mental skills, but not the networking and the social skills part?
Intelligence does not confer any advantage for solving all the evolutionarily familiar problems that our ancestors encountered. More intelligent people do not have any advantage in finding mates and often have disadvantages in working with other people.
The new breed of smart
The younger generation of today, (the majority) are wired totally different from the guys in power now, they have RADICALLY different ways of problem solving, they are the by-products of a new our new school curriculums, that rely on the group to seek out the solution, not the individual, and there’s never been a group of people more willing to be led around by the nose in the history of mankind than these guys.
As they have no role models worth a dam, no one taking charge, or coming through being the leader, no teachers, no real authority figures, they are told to congregate in little groups and figure it out the problems, with no real guidelines, and almost any answer is right. So they do the smart thing and Google it, as you do, and everything on the internet is fact – we all know that?
No wonder they have problems with authority, because in their entire school career no one took authority, there was no real authority figures, now they have low self-esteem too, so it snowballs…, cannot function as single entities at all, we – the system – wired them that way?
Nothing they say or know is their own; they will never take ownership, or responsibility of their own accord. They cannot spell, the have a total new language of their own and dictionary. They do very little with conviction; always the victim card gets played. They are the product of our liberal education system, some have escaped the dragnet only because of their parent’s persistence and willingness, to take up the task of their own children’s education – thankfully, but how will this picture look three generations down the line, when the majority of our people are poor, and middle income, and have to rely on state run schools for their education, what then?
But they are smart, some say; I guess if your idea of smart is being highly susceptible to every form of groupthink and letting other people know and run every aspect of your life – twitter BBM, then you must just very well be the smartest person in this world. Like grass eaters, they just conform to whatever the group is conforming to, eat whatever they eat, go where they go, do what they do, etc. No predator identity is left in us, or our “progeny” – offspring.
Darwin would be baffled I am sure.
Scenario testing this new social order strategy
How far will you go to make a strategy work? Have you ever wondered where your own breaking point is, your ethical and moral Rubicon? To what ends will you go with this movement to get that strategy to work?
In the context of our new and “improving” global habitat of people living in denial, and harmony, the things are becoming easier for governments to control and change, and their officials to get away with, our leaders have become more corrupt, less moral, and this in itself have become more socially acceptable, to be a villain even a bully, is okay and gets glorified.
The only standards that they have successfully eradicated, is not class in society, it is the standard of service delivery, health, education, infrastructure and moral living.
Yes we all have rights now, but rights are very often only exercised by those in trouble or on the wrong side of the law, the average citizen never ever needs his or her rights – still as long as we are all equal hey?
It’s all for you, for the greater good
Then we get the: I did it for “The greater good”. You can do what you like. As long as you can show that you are doing it for the greater good, or because you were a victim of some x factor, then somehow people turn a blind eye, because they get to benefit… they can play that card too, (even if they don’t really think so, as long as the perception is there… so long as we all agree then it’s okay). Just the perception of it is enough for the global flock.
It’s all about serving an agenda on the global scale
Governments and global societies are promoting an array of strategy, or should we rather call it an avalanche of agendas, that all the peoples of the world should be involved in, the process of transforming our societies, and fast, into one global fit, and promoting new hope for humankind as the vision is fast failing, be it either because of our socialistic or democratic ways, there are still those out there that can see the trees from the forest, and they see them burning – but as for the rest, it’s still all good…
We have adopted a universal outlook that is near sited, just the immediate environment; global events are news, nothing more.
The Humanitarian philosophy is becoming entrenched in all our diversified political doctrines, in all the corners of the world – with “equal rights and opportunities” everywhere in the world. Even some religion has made major doctrine adjustments to take in all of this, no more discrimination either.
All good, however, some believe we will suffer greatly the burden of this blind conformity, to the point of becoming a global village of mindless idiot’s, a zombie nation of xenophobes – the fear of people who are different from one’s self. If they are not liberal, they are the enemy, and I see it happening.
Different classes of society offer different levels of protection to its kin
The strategy of redefining classes in society remains a political ideology all along, from ancient times; you had the elite and the nobles and then the workers, and let’s not forget slaves.
This new global democratic ideology aims to eradicates one class for good, the middle class, and created a super-rich and or politically elite upper class, and then the very poor class, now called the “working class” right in the middle, we milk them with taxes, and keep them comfortable, supporting both, the upper and the poor – they are the slaves now.
The working class really owns nothing, the bank does, they just work, pay taxes, and live in nice house…drive medium size cars…and then all die young.
They smoke and drink way too much, get overweight and suffer lots of mental issues, all because of stress. So they are all blind to the word strategy, they rather focus on their credit and debt. But they all have terrific medical aids, and funeral policies, and even life cover, so it’s a good trade off.
How are we all equal now?
Equal means that 20% will have to support 80%. That is not equal, if you have an elite that only drains the reserves… so we work for them, they have it all, and we are all equal, equally in depth, equally taxed to death, and all equally over worked, then I would agree, we are now equal. We should not be so blind to political conformity; they say one thing, and then slot in another agenda.
Be careful who you save from the pit
By saving some people from poverty now, we may be creating a new race of drifters in the future that will be suffering directly because of it a good deed – remember “no good deed goes un-punished” – it…becomes a mental exercise in the greater good idea again, that does not necessarily translate to the factual emanating, in the second, third and fourth generation.
The point, people form new sub cultures, supporting specific political ideology, that impact on all morality, and economic growth factors far into the future. Why should I work if I can also get a free house, electricity, and a pension? There is no obligation on them to pay back, or pay forward? Free!!! Of all obligations to the 20% that keep them dry, fed and clothed. So is this a strategy or an ideology?
We as strategist tend to want to serve “the greater good”; we plan long term and have to make many calculations and predictions now, of what will be there in the future based on current situations, that exist because of international, and governmental policy, influencing global, and then regional as well as local economics and strategy.
Global politics and their Policies
Global politics and their Policies have brought the return of mass unemployment to many of the advanced economies shores. We no longer exist in safe silos either; this had a ripple effect of note. They have also had a destructive effect on poor countries – regardless of the humanitarian speeches; the good will, it did not translate into much at grass roots level..
Enormous debts have been incurred by developing countries, which in turn closed huge potential markets to the rest of the developing continents and developed world. Thus the declining of living standards of the debtor nations became a factor promoting unemployment in the creditor nations.
Two things point us to how this happened, the first is the moral and ethical compass ruined the real work that needed to be done – job creation, – not the creation of a notion of being free to sit back and relax – and the second is our own heuristic, and our competitive nature combining, that always preceded the old notions, that it is still the survival of the biggest, fastest and the fittest only…
This aspect has previously brought us to war, where we lined up the poor and marched them off to war, war has been the invention machine, a place where only the fittest and strongest survived, to come back and nation build with a new moral compass. Where new inventions were made, and later applied in society. Now it’s degraded, no more war, if we can help it…
A conflict exists now, daily between serving our self-interest and still conforming to the moral code: as a norm a person sincerely intends to act morally, but once the costs of being moral become clear, this initial intent is then just overpowered by a final decision that serves only our self-interest again…
Life is all about serving interests, and who gets preference in that checkout line.
Even people who sincerely value morality can act in ways that seem to show a blatant disregard for these moral principles held dear. How is this possible?
A strong sense of morality didn’t arise from just one individual’s choices but from a collection of several to try and create a structure of harmony, and peace, where everyone is reasonable content with routine and the mundane, while living together with constraints of rules, or laws that becomes a norm, and the trade-off is we all get a slice of the pie if we play by the rules. This aspect keeps as constraint. However we don’t operate well within these confines of restraints we want freedom to pursue our interests…
Constraints make us think outside the box – of morality and defy virtue.
Constraints in this social design, are still further compounded with social complexity; this naturally occurs when one’s own environments both mental and natural, become influenced with human drives, desires, needs and peer pressure, group, and cultural norms as well as environmental, and economic pressures that influenced our decisions, and actions to be moral or not. We are never sober or salient in this dilemma.
So if we are hungry and we find food, and shelter enough of then we are no longer needy, then we progress to satisfying our wants…
The evolution of our human instincts pertaining to satisfying needs, and its influence on our social behaviour keeps overlapping with our need to be moral, and ethical, so that society will accept us and assist us in satisfying our own wants…
Cultural morality has provided a way for us to do this in, that of managing this conflict in specific groups, that would in other groups not be acceptable, and therefore it’s described as culture.
What we do daily and find pleasure in could be punishable by death and outlawed somewhere else. So is it still moral? We can always hide behind culture to be safe then and then avoid the moral high ground.
So safe to say – there exist no real code for global morality – just principles of good and bad – fair and unfair, legal and illegal.
Morality is therefore over rated on the bigger scale of things; it becomes a situation on situation, case on case affair. It becomes a blindfold for the good at hart. Here it’s just co-operative engagements and exchanges still; we cannot speak of a global morality ever.
Even people who have well-internalized moral principles, and who are in relatively low-pressure situations, void from culture, can also fail to act morally.
We have all failed the moral test due to some form of desire we had, that we gave into. We all serve our desires daily, anything from very subtle urges – smoking in a crowded bus, to stealing the last cupcake from a “stingy” colleague’s desk – Social attribution…
What makes it right…is culture?
Things that people say, as well as ideas that motivate us, that are fulfilling a lust or desire.
Desire is always the greatest of all our impulses that serves as a motivator
Desire is a very powerful motivator, and can sway even a rational mind to participate in immoral and unethical behaviour – all in pursuit of the gaols and objectives of fulfilling such a desire. Those who have more want more, and then it becomes lust.
Lust is described as the pursuit of an ultimate (recurring) pleasure. Like a drug, that you can have whenever, to still a deep hunger…it’s all back to self-gratifying, in one way or another, metal, physical, sexual, whatever the desire is, or in combination, it drives us to just seek gratification. Now we compete…
Then we also use words, and language to move others to desire and lust, as well as tactics, or heuristics; refers to experience-based techniques for problem solving, learning, and discovery.
Our competitive Heuristic refers to experiment and experience-based techniques for problem solving; our innate ability for learning from experience, and discovery how to get what we want, desire, and lust for, by performing certain actions.
By Definition: A heuristic is a mental shortcut that allows people to solve problems and make judgment calls quickly and efficiently because of specific human traits.
This is why experience is such a well sought after trait, it has performed many experiments, and tested many shortcuts, to know how to summarise a situation well, and get from it what we desire.
This summary also extends to; planning for instance, like strategy, becomes a dynamic and continuous management “experiment” — not as much about “predicting what will come” as it is about “preparing for what is more likely to come – and how to get it” – Also described as intuition.
Intuition is a human’s awareness of abstract thoughts validate by concrete truths. Plato said it’s a superior faculty, and Spinoza held that it is the highest form of a developed human knowledge – called intuition
We act out our desires to be happy
Human beings act in specific ways that maximises their happiness, to reach a premise of content, in every interaction, survival essentially boils down to one key tenet—cooperate think, and do, or die trying. Social tools are a prerequisite to survival for most.
How does this then explain the fact that young men voluntarily go off to war and die for their groups? This obviously didn’t fit with his general idea of individuals only pursuing their own self-interests. No, we do things for the same reasons, no matter the situation; however, the motivators can change.
We use our cognitive strengths to do so, to comply, or to get others to comply with our will – be it by using our physical nature, mental capability, verbal abilities, or any given power – (bullied, bribed, favours etc.). People will do whatever it takes to get their satisfaction…nowadays – they show little to no constraint, they demand it, it’s their right…oh boy.
This is all because of our social attribution, if he can do it so can I, if they can get away with it so can we, it’s not wrong its ignorance… I did not know, should not be an excuse anymore, people need to be held accountable…
Whatever socially desirable character traits are morally desirable, especially from leaders today, however, this aspect will not count at the interviews for these people, for today we choose people to lead us into the future, based on our own affiliation, and like. Competence, and moral character, has very little bearing on the positions we slot people into, or so it seems.
Remember – Thinking is always informed and influenced by our indigenous or ethnic culture and its attribution; attribution is the processes by which individuals explain and justify the causes of their behaviour and actions, the way we act is all hardwired in our beliefs.
Our Ability to make moral judgments comes from having innate foundations, a strict upbringing, and is not just from learned and social responses… we are programed to ultimately survive… This programming better include discipline, self-discipline, restraint, a good logic of responsibility and accountability as well as a strong moral compass, or it will be at the cost of the greater good and others…
So who’s survival strategy are you promoting in the bigger context of things today by raising kids in one fashion or another…how we spend our time, money and efforts should be evaluated, to see if we add value – to ourselves first, and then others.
For if the self is content, it can be shared, if not, it will drain those around it…this is the nature of strategy, and life, nature dictates that only productive elements in the group will get to stay, if we plan it with a few good principles, no moral or ethical dilemma will derail it…
There has been ample time, namely, the whole existence of the human species to make mistakes; we can hardly afford any more of them now. During which time, mankind have been learning by experience how to strategize…in order to survive, especially the effects of certain of these actions on their part resulting in happiness in some, and despair in others; we fully well know we cannot all live without restraining of will…free will is the enemy of cooperative collaboration – team work.
And these beliefs which have thus come down the ages with us are reflected in certain rules of society, which specifically addresses the conduct that is becoming a member of society that goes along with strategy making. We cannot use our social attribution to hide behind, if it’s wrong it’s wrong, if it’s bad it’s bad, and if it is criminal it’s just that…no more spin doctoring haphazard strategies. Playing for time is just not an option, you either do it or you don’t…you either can or cannot…pretty straightforward stuff, if you are competent at least.
We can mentally train ourselves to draw more pleasure from the mundane and routine manner of life, by enjoying the simple things, strategy as with life’s things need to be kept simple, than by mainly pursuing the fragile utopia of fame and fortune, that only wants to deal with big things.
This is why thinking positive psychologists often refer to people’s innate “resilience” that they have or possess, their ability to reinvent, and redesign, until they succeed, the future is never too late, we can change it any time now.
Despite our own individual personal background and circumstances, beliefs and education, remember people tend to follow sound principles far more readily, that any moral and virtues ways. So lead by example, and lay down the principles to follow…
Start with the first law of personal growth; whatever you do always strive to do it the best that you know how. The world tends to reward those who give the extra effort, but more importantly, you feel great about having done a good job. Make it your goal to do everything as well as you can do it because it is in your contribution that you find yourself, that you find your sense of significance. “People who do good work feel good about themselves and people who feel good about themselves do good work.” Don’t let others dictate the pace you set…
The human spirit is surprisingly durable and malleable and can cope with most harsh reality, however in the main, it only strives to become happier at any cost, even denial, nothing keeps people trapped in their own self like corrupting them with hope for a great future, actions speak louder than hope and any words, you must therefore strive to tap into your own mental potential by activating your mind with critical thinking, to free yourself of this trap of mental numbness, and start to think about your own thinking, for in order for creative things to manifest, thinking needs to stimulate ideas, that flow into strategy, that will bring great joy, and then multiply it.
Read more on my blog; or Read the book or Ebook; Read more in my new book Strategic Management, The Radical Revolutionary Strategic Management Matrix for Predators by Reinier Geel, now available at these stores