Monthly Archives May 2016

Can power be controlled?

Humans have long been fascinated by the dynamism of free-flowing waters. Yet we have expended great effort to tame rivers for transportation, water supply, flood control, agriculture, and power generation. Poff et al, 2008, The Natural Flow Regime   Sometimes life develops as if designed by us. We feel we are in a flow. At other times, things happen that push our life into disarray. We feel we are loosing control. As we fight against feelings of powerlessness we respond by identifying problems developing and implementing a solution for its control. Control is profoundly ingrained within most existing human societies:
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The gifts of powerlessness

Thus an army without flexibility never wins a battle. A tree that is unbending is easily broken. Lao Tzu  Following on the first post ‘The Power of Powerlessness‘ this post explores the gifts of powerlessness: Paradoxically, giving up the kind of power and control – needed to predict the unpredictable and control the uncontrollable –  enables us to get our power back as individuals. How we as leaders for sustainability relate to both experiences of power and powerlessness has a decisive impact on the growth of our humanness, humility and compassion. As a result, the contribution we are willing to make
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The power of powerlessness

It seems paradoxical that leaders can become more powerful through a loss of power. A fear of  powerlessness and the inability to control an unsustainable future, a reluctant stakeholder group or an inner battle could lead to a long period of self-doubt, lack of confidence and an inability to lead according to our full potential. Experiences of powerlessness hit our most vulnerable spot, the feeling of not being in control. Powerlessness revives most common fears such as the fear of abandonment, failure, betrayal, inadequacy, insignificance, oppression, and loss of love.   Yet, disappointment and disillusionment are an unavoidable part of any leadership
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ENGAGING WITH FUTURE POSSIBILITIES IS A WAY OF LIFE

What would you expect from a book written by a 95 year old lady? If you are like me, you would expect her to look back at her life. But what if  you read her book and, apart from a few analyses on what she had learned from life, you read about what she is looking forward to? How could this inspire you to engage with your own future possibilities? The book I am talking about is “The Next American Revolution”, by Grace Lee Boggs. It is a fascinating account by a person who has seen it all – born just after
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A POWERFUL TOOL TO MAKE STAKEHOLDER COLLABORATION WORK

Sometimes life is contradictory. One could suggest that in stakeholder collaboration people work together, because they are not strong enough to achieve their goal alone. This surely is true. And yet, without suggesting that everyone in a collaboration has to compete in order to be the stronger, my experience is that the stronger the collaboration partners, the better the collaboration quality. What does this mean in practice? (c) Collective Leadership Institute www.collectiveleadership.de If weak parties work together the likelihood of a successful outcome is low If parties with severe power differences work together and one party dominates, the likelihood of
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