I have been reading the series of dissecting “The Office” by venkatesh rao at the ribbonfarm. And watching the actual TV serial series in a mad obsession.
Some, opinions on the decision making behind the story-line writing. For ex:
from the branch closing episode to the next. I would call there was a
experiment and changed the next episode storyline based on the TRP rating.
But seriously, i was getting sick of Michael was preferring the stanford branch
And as is natural with any psychology parallels/articles characterized or defined only with words, found myself comparing with the articles. It keeps running through my head.
The more i ithink about work and what i should get done next, the more i realize, i have already become the checked-out loser. Darn it….
Ok, he has a sub-division within the loser list.
The staff-loser and the line-loser.
The definition being that the staff-loser’s function is to be the priest of the hierarchy while the line-loser’s function are closer to revenue-generation.
Now, because of the HIWTYL policy all human beings learn to employ automatically in any social situation you can expect the organization’s bureaucracy to be as heavily riddled with defensive policies as possible.
My instinctual shying away from Team Lead/Project Lead position signal that i have a reflexive aversion towards becoming a staff-loser. I don’t think they are useless, in the unfortunate real world we all live in, they are a necessity, if only to save businesses from oppurtunistic humans. It’s only probably in a Ayn-Randistic Ideal world they can be avoided altogether.
Well, the next thing to do is unlearn the habits of checked-outness and learn
the habits of the socio-path.
Rule 1: Bayesian decision making. estimate potential risk and potential rewards
in any career move(i.e: 8-9 hrs a day of what you do in office.
Rule 2: To quote Venkatesh Rao from his ribbon farm post.” The risk-management work of an organization can be divided into two parts: the unpredictable part that is the responsibility of the line hierarchy, and the predictable, repetitive part that is the responsibility of the staff hierarchy.”
So this means, when in doubt about which is good for your career take the unpredictable option.In your personal family system (IFS)
Rule 3: To quote him again “Bureaucracies are structures designed to do certain things very efficiently and competently: those that are by default in the best interests of the Sociopaths.
They are also designed to do certain things incompetently: those expensive things that the organization is expected to do, but would cut into Sociopath profits if actually done right.And finally, they are designed to obstruct, delay and generally kill things that might hurt the interests of the Sociopaths.” Take the priority of your decisions not from the bureaucracy and the rules/system it makes, but from what you want to achieve/get done.
Oh and while doing that, keep in mind that bureaucracies are hardly ever set in stone and do change, perhaps a thixotropic fluid is a good analogy.i.e: They have high viscousity(read resistance to change), while under normal conditions, but are less viscous when stressed. I might even suggest this is the key behind Jack Welch’s successful turnaround of GE*. One could argue that he personally created the stress required to get the GE Bureaucracy to adopt changes required to earn profits.
Rule 4: Recognize your habit patterns in taking sides within the social groups. Make sure you use ambiguity by deliberate choice(calculating the effect of it on your social status) rather than by reflex habits(read heuristics) shaped by past experiences.
*– While i don’t claim to have a lot of knowledge about the history of GE or of Jack Welch’s term at it, I have read his book “Straight from the Gut” and think i have some guess at his approach/ideas in decision making.