Saturday, January 24, 2009

Being Superficial at Work

"Superficiality in a special way is an enemy of intimacy. When one thinks carefully about why certain people who are competent, well-educated, energetic, and well supported with good tools fail, it is often the red thread of superficiality that does them in. They never get seriously and accountably involved in their work."

--Max DePree

If one is not involved in his or her work, how can they be productive? How can uninvolved people accomplish anything? And where seriousness and accountability are lacking how can progress be sustained? Is superficiality the underlining reason why we fail?


dave wheeler said...

Interesting question. Who however is responsible when folks don't get "accountably" imvolved in their work? The individual? The leader/manager? Both?

judith ellis said...

For me, the greatest form of accountability or responsibility is the kind we place on ourselves. Leaders and managers, without doubt, assist in this effort.

dave wheeler said...

I agree...yet as a front line manager and trainer I do see a difference ethic and attitude regarding one's work in the new folks I lead and train. If no one teaches you of it's value and importance, you don't know how important attitude and work ethic are. This lesson is often taught for the first time in today's day and age in the workplace rather than the home or school.

No all change of the cultural and socio-economic change of the past decades has been positive unfortunately...

judith ellis said...

I understand your point well, Dave. Being on the front line, I'm sure you see the lack of responsibility more than you would like. I continue to be amazed at the lack of customer service in stores, restaurants, and when you call a business. Shocking!

There is without doubt both individual and collective accountability and responsibility. As it takes a village to raise a child, it takes others to assist us in continuing development at any age, even when--especially when--in opposition to us.

I also think that I am sometimes guilty of not seeing young people today for what they do have to offer as opposed to what is believed should be offered. Buy there does seem to be a lack in ethics. But I suppose there has always been. No decade has been totally positive, eh?

With my nieces and nephews I try to be conscious of really "seeing" them, even when I am thinking and screaming internally, "where is your head?" I then realize that my mother, teachers, bosses, and mentors undoubtedly thought the same thing of me. Ah, those were the days!