Category Archives: General

Managing in the shadow: Beyond technique

In the last Random Riff, Beyond Downton Abbey, I found myself wondering what management development might look like if we were to take seriously the fact that much of what goes on in any system is disorderly, unpredictable and, at times, downright chaotic. Let’s face it; plans are often merely a pretext designed to make… Read More »

Beyond Downton Abbey

Between the idea and the reality 
 Between the conception and the creation
Falls the Shadow T. S. Eliot, “The Hollow Men” In Downton Abbey there’s Upstairs and Downstairs. In organizations of any size, however, there are, in addition to the Upstairs folks and the Downstairs folks, the Neither-Upstairs-Nor-Downstairs folks (aka middle management.) Let’s call them… Read More »

It’s called woodshedding . . . I did not know this.

“There is a crack in everything, That’s how the light gets in.“ Leonard Cohen, “Anthem” I just had an email exchange with my friend and wonderful saxophonist, Colleen Allen, in which I told her that I’d taken a bit of a sabbatical from my piano lessons … way too much input and not enough time to process… Read More »

Looking for the edge: How uncomfortable are you willing to be?

A wee random seasonal riff … Earlier this week I listened to Jian Ghomeshi’s interview with the jazz drummer Jerry Granelli on his CBC program Q. Jerry is the only surviving member of the Vince Guaraldi Trio that, 50 years ago, recorded Charlie Brown’s Christmas. (I should tell you, en passant, that the tunes on… Read More »