Read why and how to solve them 

We all face problematic situations in business and may feel overwhelmed by them. At the same time a problem for one employee may not be one for someone else. It all depends on the level of consciousness and development in a specific area of life. Business problems have a personal touch that we cannot ignore. This is usually the reason why we look for experts and consultants when we face them. Specialists are in fact people who faced the problem so many times that they have found workarounds, techniques, methods and long lasting solutions.

The problem with problems is that team leader and CEOs may not realise that there is a one because they are not informed. Employee are not telling them directly that they have a problem. We may think our situation is normal or not going to change.

title image of the blog post : solving business problem is hard

What does indicate that we have a problem?

We can identify problems with the following factors.

  • Overthinking

We think of the situation again and again and organize meetings to discuss about it. We focus on defining the problem. Finding the responsible person or department. We are on the problem.

  • Negative emotions

We observe nervousness, lack of enthusiasm, stressed out or irritated employees. Meetings and working within teams becomes a pain.

  • Externalizing guilt

We accuse external factors or others for the situation. We blame other departments for not doing their job. We accuse others for not wanting to cooperate. We are the victims and others the perpetrators.

  • Physical symptoms

Employees may have headaches, feel fatigue, and even get ill as a consequence of a problematic situation that is not dealt with.

  • Compensation behavior

Employees start procrastinating, avoid interactions with other employees, start to indulge themselves with Social Media, food, alcohol and sometimes drugs...

  • Avoid discussion

Teams prefer to not talk about it and ignore the existence of the problem. They deal with their daily business and disengage as soon as the problem pops up.

Why don't we just solve the business problem? 

There are few reasons for us to avoid solving problems. Here is a list of the most common reasons for such problem solving avoidance:

  • Low awareness

We may not make the connection between our emotions and physical state with the situation we are in. We are disconnect from our inner self and may be driven by our Ego. The ego will always look at the outside world to compare, judge and explain the world. 

  • No decision power

Employees may be in companies where decisions about their daily work life are made by others at a higher level. Employees may know what to do to improve the situation but are not allowed to take actions and if they did they may be afraid to be severely punished (fired, new lower position...) 

  • Fixed mindset

A fixed mindset makes us believe that our competences are fixed and cannot be improved. When we face a problem we may believe that we are not able to raise to the situation.

  • Stuck syndrome

Employees feel tighten up by cultural norms, self-doubts, impression that nothing can change... Employees are seeing their situation as impossible to change.

  • Conflict avoidance

Employees may also be unable to face conflict in a positive way and prefer to avoid them. This means that they may sabotage their work, not talk about the problem, ignore feedbacks and so on.

  • Pleasing others

Employees may also prefer to please others and more especially their hierarchical superior instead of sharing what they really think. If a supervisor says or do something that could damage the company development. An employee may see it, comment on it with colleagues but will not say a word to stop the catastrophe to happen. This is a negative consequence of hierarchy.

  • Power conflict & internal politics

Even people at the higher level of the hierarchy are subject to problems solving avoidance because they are working against each other in order to get more money, fame and employees. In big companies, the more employees you have under your control, the bigger your budget is. The bigger the budget the higher the financial reward at the end of the year. Such regulation pushes responsible to engage in self-promotion, keeping employees in useless position to get their bonus...

''We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them."  - Albert Einstein

Consequences of not solving problems

Business are facing problem blindness. Problems challenge us to look at the world with new glasses. They tell us the way we behaved so far did not serve us. Most of the problems we have in life comes from a misunderstanding. I misunderstand you and interpret your actions and words based on my current mindset. You misunderstand me. All reasons listed above are so interrelated that it may seem impossible to solve the issues we are facing right now.

People change when the pain is too strong, when they cannot handle it anymore. Pain is a signal that we are ready to grow. Like the caterpillar who will become a butterfly. Like the child being given birth. Like the teenager who rebelles because he wants to grow. All this pain, emotions and thoughts are a calling.

When will the business world be in such a pain that it will have to change? When will societies realize how unaligned businesses are run? - Anne-Cécile Graber

We manage companies as if they were machines that just need simple orders, oil and gas to function when in reality we are dealing with human beings searching for sens, connection, purpose and fulfillment.

Why and how to shift paradigm? 

Businesses have to shift their mindsets if they want to be part of the future of work. The expectations of employees, customers and any person involved is shifting with younger generations aspiring for more sense in their work, more respect for the planet and their fellow human beings. We are at a time where information about companies misbehavior can spread within minutes all around the world. The Artificial Intelligence is going to change the way we earn money for a living. 70% of current jobs will disappear as a consequence of AI implementation in business. The number of qualified employees will be too low to respond to companies needs. Companies have to attract those qualified employees. Furthermore, they may not achieve it, if they are not responding to younger generation aspirations. There is a need to change the way we look at competence and potential. We can learn at any age as long as we are interested in the subject which means for business that they have to find fast and interested learners instead of already educated employees. Businesses have to evolve. Otherwise they will simply fade away as new ways of working are put in place by visionaries. We need to challenge our beliefs about the way we manage and do business.

Nowadays businesses takes into account the monetary aspect, the numbers, the KPIs, the Return on investment. We forgot why we came all together in big organisations. We forgot to serve each other. We are unconsciously harming the planet, the economy, the employees, the suppliers, and the clients because we made a decision years ago. Money is time. We can consciously decide to shift paradigm and decide that life is a luxury that we can enjoy.

There is not one answer fits all for how to shift your business. It means that you will have to find your way and dig deep within yourself to find answers. The shift that need to happen are: 

Selecting the right expert

In order to shift you have few options:
  • struggle on your own
  • struggle with others
  • be accompanied by precursors
If you decide to be accompanied find someone with whom you share at least the same belief about the state in which you are and the state you want to be. Ask them what they would do in your situation? Ask them how they would not solve this problem for you. Spend some times with them to see if you can have a profound conversation and spend time in silence. Find a person or a group of person who resonates with you. It may take some time or happen very quickly. Be clear about what you want and why you want it.

If you resonate with my article and want to contact me. please do so: contact[at] and see how we could cooperate together. You can also connect with me on Social Media :)


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I spoke with entrepreneurs, CEOs of small and medium companies. They all face difficulties with fostering cooperation within their company after a certain time or when they add up more and more employees to their organizations. Usually, we consider that people will cooperate because they are working for the same company. Is it really the case? No.

The reality we all face in small, medium and big companies is that cooperation does not happen on its own. It has to be purposefully planned at the early stages of the company existence. Otherwise, cooperation will not always happen and silos, politics and conflict will be leading the company life. As a CEO or team leader you want people to work hand in hand with empathy.  So that the service and product you deliver to your customers are the best your company could ever possibly produce. It won't happen on its own!

What should you do to ensure that cooperation will be fostered in your company? Here are few suggestions on how you could do it.

  1. Clear Why 

People cooperate when they understand the reasons why they are supposed to work together. This is especially important when their roles or tasks may have opposite short term goals. The Research & Development Director will want to spend when the financial director will aim for the least expenses to keep the company in the positive. Which means that a conflict will for sure appear unless they both know that they want to create the future of transportation. Plus, conflict can be resolved by using the non-violent communication.

 I really love the video from Simon Sinek about "Starting with the Why". It will help you understand its importance and start to define yours. 

2. Clear roles and tasks

Employees who know what is expected from them and who can self-evaluate their performance in order to improve them are more engaged that those who do not. It is important as a CEO to define roles and tasks because it will help you for the following:
  1. Determine who does what and why (qualification)
  2. Identify tasks that have no one to perform them (reduce conflict potential) 
  3. Simplify hiring new employees based on the kind of soft and hard skills required to perform them 
  4. redistribute roles when the workload when it is unbalanced

3. Clear responsibilities and interdependence 

Employees who know with whom they are supposed to speak when they face a specific problem are less stressed out than those who know. Help you employees understand others responsibilities and the interdependence from the beginning on. You may say "We are just 4 in the company we can speak to each other" to which I reply : "It it really clear and what if in one year you were 50, then 100 then 1000 employees?"

 You need a system to facilitate exchanges between people who have the knowledge and those who need it. You may end up having 2 teams working on similar projects without them knowing it which is a waste of time and resources. Plus, they may be much more efficient if they were working together or simply focussing on different projects. 

4. Clear conflict resolution

Even with all precautions on earth. You will never be able to anticipate roles and responsibilities conflict. This is the reason why you should offer a conflict resolution process. I would encourage you to look at non violent communication as an option for your company. Your employees should know that if there is a conflict there is a way to solve it and someone (you) anticipated the situation. This will have the effect to reassure employees. 
I have asked myself this questions many times and I am almost sure you asked yourself the same question or a similar one. Here are my thoughts about it. I am not sure how long this text could become so bear with me.

There are several aspects to consider when thinking about the reasons why people may want to work with you: your experience & expertise, your hard skills, your soft skills and the person you are and other things we tend to forget. 

Your experience & expertise

In a business world where we want to control everything which is insane when you think about it. People will take decisions based on your resume or Linkedin or social profiles. This is the reason why many of us take time to polish those profiles. We all know that it may be the first thing that people see about us. What do they say about us? Where are people finding us and how? 

Those are vitrines where we expose our experience and expertise. This is where the words we use can have a huge impact on how we are found and perceived. This the moment you should wonder: Should I use my own voice there or figure out which voice people expect from a person in my field, with my experience? I have struggled a bit with this question. I finally figured out that the best was to be me. I share articles that brought me something or made me think deeper. 

Maybe people meet you at work and the way you work with them will influence how they see your expertise. Unless your work results do not meet people expectation. You should be able to show your expertise and gain the experience that reassure the control freaks.  

Your hard skills

We all have developed hard skills that we use daily to perform our work. Some of us learn how to master Powerpoint and excel while others learned to code. The awesome thing about hard skills is that you can pass exams, obtain certification or just prove it by doing it. 

We can learn almost anything as long as we want it. This is why I always questions my desires before learning any new hard skills. I love to learn and can become totally fascinated and "obsessed" by it. When I learned german, I had no clue what so ever what was coming up to me. I was so dedicated and decided to learn German as fast as I could humanly do that I would spend any free time learning new words, digging deeper and deeper in the grammatical rules that made sometimes no sense to my French mind (why on earth would you have der, die das? well you can ask me why on earth do you french people avec il and elle??) 

Your soft skills 

Soft skills on the other hand are those things you cannot really measure. You have them or not but as there are skills you can also learn them. You soft skills may be your capacity to connect with other people. Your leadership, your way of listening, your capacity to welcome the other person with empathy. You can meditate to become more in touch with your emotions and your body or you can perform a sport that you love. We need to connect to who we are in order to allow our soft skills to develop. Self-development comes from a desire to grow to become the person we really are without the conditioning of the society. 

I sometimes wonder what would be the world if one morning we would all wake up with no memory of our past. Would there still be war if we were truly in the present? Would there still be racism and sexism or an -ism that exists? Probably not because all that is grounded in our EGO who is attached to the past or the future but not with the present...

The person you are 

The person that you are is unique, exceptional and here to learn and grow. You were born somewhere in a specific family and you went through different stages and experiences in life. You took decision (consciously or not) to go after thing to pursue a goal. Are those goals yours or those of others? Are you where you wanted to be or somewhere you never expected? 

All those experiences shaped the way you interact with life. All those experience created your mental model or the way you are interpreting the world. This is the reason why I cannot hate a racist or a sexist person. I know they went through life with particular glasses that made them create a wall between then and the others. I know they are not aware that we are all from the same race. I know they are disconnected with self-love. When you love yourself fully and learn how to be compassionate with yourself then you cannot hat others. When you attack someone or feel attacked you are just saying violently to the world: "Please, fulfill my needs". 

Trying to connect with your needs makes you a more awake person, a more peaceful person, more human. The person that you are went through many things in life and you have the choice today to be or become the one you truly are. You have the possibility to love yourself in order to love others... 

Other things we tend to forget

We tend to forget that humans survived so far because of our capacity to create and to learn. We have potential. We have the capacity to improve the world around you by improving yourself. You can change your life, your questions, your habits, your thoughts. You can transform like the caterpillar. 

So why people will work with me? 

They will work with you because you bring them something (experience, skills, personality, world vision) that they need to go further. The will work with you for who you are. They will decided to cooperate with you for achieving their goals that may be also yours. You will work with me if my words resonates with you not because I am a super expert in something: who is really? We will work together because we vibrate the same way because we connect because we are in alignment. Business has a tendency to separate spirituality and work but I thinkg that spirituality is work and work is spirituality. I want to express myself in fully by doing what I do best: listening, analysing, understanding, asking questions, guiding without giving the direction, allowing you to find your solution not mine. 

When our emotions trick us

Today, I see once again how communication in companies is vital and yet difficult. We had to prepare a work document in order to share important information. When we delivered the document, we found  out that despite the discussion we had at the beginning of the project, the document did not meet the client's expectations.

In retrospect, I find that our communication did not allow us to clarify the client's specific expectations. We could have asked him to give us an example of what he was waiting for and show him our results sooner; But yes there is a but. It is clear that the client did not (could not) take time for these clarifications.

I always like to ask myself the question Why and enrich it with more questions that arise. This helps me to understand deeply the background of any situation and to initiate real changes in my behavior. We change when when understand the usefulness of it at the emotional level.

Why don't we  want to communicate our needs from the beginning?

Do we really know what we want?

Probably not and this is the case quite often. In the corporate world not knowing seems to be unacceptable. This black / white, knowing / ignorance dichotomy prevents people from expressing their doubts and makes them hermetic to questions at all times.

Can we express our needs?

There are two aspects to the expression of needs. First, we must be aware of them and understand their origins. This is not part of the things we learn in our societies. In general, we learn quickly enough to meet others demands in order to be accepted. Identifying our needs therefore requires the desire to learn it. So far, I have found very few places to not say none where we could learn how to express our needs. It is therefore a solitary work or accompanied by a coach, or even a psychologist if we feel pain.

Where do our needs come from?

Our needs are translated by the presence of positive or negative emotions. A positive emotion will push us to want to reproduce the conditions that made it possible while a negative emotion urges us to avoid them. The vocabulary of negative emotions is totally forbidden in business because when a person expresses a negative emotion we interpret it as a personal attack. We should realize that these emotions reflect an unsatisfied need.

Once we have identified our emotions. It may be difficult for us to express them because this expression is not encouraged in companies and even society. Men have way more difficulty with this because they have been educated to show no signs of weakness. Expressing the impact of behavior on our emotional state is an important step towards constructive communication.

What do our emotions mean?

Our emotions inform us about our needs. It seems essential to learn to recognize them and to decipher their meanings. Did you notice that the same emotions arise regularly? That the same situations seem to be repeated with different actors?

We all have needs and it is our role to recognize them and to express ourselves so that it is easier for our interlocutor to understand what he can do to help us satisfy them. Be careful, the others are not in the duty to satisfy them. They may not have the capacity or desire to do so. However, identifying our emotions and the needs attached to them eases and allows us to accept them.

Can we express all our needs at work?

In principle yes. We must however take into account our level of comfort with the person in front of us. You should always start within a relationship where you feel comfortable. Then with time enlarge the circle in which you express your needs. Any change requires time and energy. Do not get discouraged if you forget and get back on track :)

How should I express my needs?

The non-violent communication developed by psychotherapist Marshall B. Rosenberg indicates a four-step process:

  1. Observe the behavior that makes you react
  2. Identify and express feelings that arise
  3. Identify and express your needs
  4. Formulate an demand (not a requirement)
Ps: I invite you to read the book "Words are windows or they are walls - Initiation to nonviolent communication" by Marshall B. Rosenberg for more details.

Do we ask questions to determine the needs of the other?

It may be tricky to ask questions to another person in order to determine their needs. You can use the pattern as to recognize your needs by asking questions or expressing your assumptions to understand the other. This can help you get closer to their real needs. You can start with phrases like:
"When you do / say this, is what you want ... or rather ..."
"I'd like to understand what you need to reach X. Can you tell me more about your expectations?"

Asking to someone else gives them the space to express themselves and to be better understood and even to better understand himself. Listening to the someone else can also allows you to listen to yourself.

Emotions can screw up communication if not listened to 

Communication is not easy because it must be done with consciousness. When our emotions take control we may disconnect from our consciousness and say or do things we would have not done if we were able to recognize the emotions and those needs early enough. This is where we need to develop strategies to reduce the risk of saying or doing things that will negatively impact the relationship. Depending on your resilience level and the one of your counterpart it can be more or less difficult to revert to a positive relationship after a clash. I invite you to find our strategy to avoid going so far: go for a toilet break, go for a walk, ask to have a conversation later ...

Communication should allow you to align with your needs and those of others.

Communicating can be learned

In order to learn how to communicate effectively. One must first learn how to communicate with oneself. Understanding our emotions and needs is a first step to a better exchange with others and allows us with time to create a two way communication where everyone is free to be and feel as he is. 

Question of the week: 

In which situations do you have the most difficulty expressing yourself and why?
I observe a trend nowadays which is to "empower employees". This only shows that nowadays employees have no power what so ever. This idea of empowering a person makes me a bit doubtful. It feels like saying: we are going to empower you under certain conditions and here there are: you are powerful but you need someone else approval, your are powerful but you cannot decide how to perform your job ect ect. In fact it feels like fake power. Employees themselves end up not believing a word about empowerment practices. Yes I am empowered but only in areas you want.

So empowerment is not the way company will generate an engaged workforce. What could it be? 

Some start to talk about implementing the agile framework to other areas than IT but again it is limiting employees growth and the company's development. If we want to see the most creative, the most dedicated, the most efficient employees we must totally change the way we interact with them.

We need a radical evolution!

So far we are facing paternalistic constructions in companies. No one can move as long as the father figure says so. We are all adult why not treat us as such? I propose another way to see the world of work. One where You can do what you do best and decide what should be done while exchanging with others that are impacted by your decision. One where your potential is recognized and magnified. One where you can change roles and tasks as you grow. One where your personality is not something to hide but to be proud of. I offer you the possibility to make your workplace a living place.

I hear you saying "what on earth are you talking about? You cannot be yourself at work. It would be a mess" Isn't your workplace some kind of mess already? plus it is not because companies function a certain way nowadays that it is the good one.

There are alternatives to the patriarchal management and one of them is self-managed companies.
We can choose to free employees from the obligation to report to someone else. We can free them from the burden of silos. We can trust them and allow them to work as they want, how they want and where they want as long as they create the value they were hired for. Misconception I often hear when talking about self-management are the following ones:

Misconceptions about self-management

  • Self-management creates messy processes (as if processes in business were good nowadays...)

In fact in self-management people are responsible for their actions and are really accountable which means that if a process is not working effectively people must take action to correct it. Rules and acceptable behavior are explicitly expressed and help people evaluate what is best for the company. 

  • People take decisions that only profit them 

In self-managed companies people are hired to make the company vision a reality. We are inherently good and want to participate to the world betterment. Bad behavior are born because of work conditions that create them. Self-management creates more space for everyone. Furthermore, employees' needs can be expressed without shame which encourages a culture of trust and transparency. In an open culture employee will take the best decision for the company. Only psychopath or people not aligned with the company vision may take negative actions and can be therefor fired.  

  • Self-management is anarchy

Self-management is not anarchy at all. In facts it creates exactly the opposite because it enforces transparency and trust. People are working together toward the company vision and agree on the best way to get there by taking on the necessary roles. Self-management is in the end very organized but flexible which we cannot say about current organizations.

  • Employees are not motivated

First, ask yourself what motivates you and imagine working for a company that is working on something you believe in. This company gives you the tools and time to work toward the realisation of its vision. Wouldn't you be motivated? The question now is are you working for a company whose Vision awakes you or are you working for money to pay the bill. Many companies don't really have a vision which make vocational working unpractical. Companies must rediscover their vision before implementing self-management. 

Self-management baldy implemented 

You may want to implement self-management but be confused about how to do it. I also saw employers implementing self-management without realizing that they did not implement self management but:

  • Let employees on their own with no vision

Basically they provide an income to their employees and tell them "work!" but aren't clear about the reason why they should be working or what is expected from them. So be clear about your why and what. 

  • No planned communication

Another mistake is to let communication be a spontaneous act which means days, weeks and months can pass by without having people talking together about the evolution of their work. 
In this case, I encourage you to have fixed meetings with clear goals but not predefined agenda. For example Weekly update about what was done, is being done and is to be done. The solution meeting: facing an issue? ask competente people to help you find a solution for it.  

  • Expecting people to do thing a certain way

You told or let people work on their own term but did not explicitly stated what you expected them to do or expect them to work a certain way. In this case, you need to clarify with the person the way she  is planning to achieve her goal. You can then express your ideas on how they could solve it too which may open them to a new solution they did not think about. It is also possible that your option is not practical for them. The most important is that they produce the expected result before a defined deadline.

Self-management is not a magic wand

You need to believe self-management which means you must believe that people are good and can take decision on their own. You must believe that letting others be is the way to go. You must believe that money is not the end of your journey but that your organisation as a "raison d'être" and that you are a vessel of its realisation. 

Self-management is easy to understand but difficult to implement because we have to be conscious of our conditioning, mental models and belief. Each individual can flourish in self-development when we truly understand what it means for each one of us. 

We need more people working for things they believe in. We need people who care about their clients' need. We need to rethink the way we work so that we can change the world. 

What does it mean for you? How would a self-managed day, week, month, year look like?

When self-management transforms an internship

Most of the time when talking about internships people think photocopying, coffee and unnecessary tasks. The internships are supposed to teach us how to work but sometimes they end up as a longue term observation or idleness spent on Facebook or Whatsapp to kill time. Of course, there are internships where trainees work hard and are even downright exploited.

I wanted to avoid this kind of setback when we decided to take a trainee and wanted to make sure she was going to learn how to work with autonomy and pleasure. This is the context in which we set up self-management. I am French and work for a German IT and Innovation consulting company based in Leipzig and I live in Stuttgart. Since the beginning of April we have a French trainee, who works in our office in Leipzig. I wanted to see if my convictions about self-management could be confronted with reality.

I have followed the following process to ensure that this internship would be a learning experience at the personal and professional level and offer development for both the trainee and myself. My goal was that this internship serves both of us.


The process began well before the internship beginning. During the first call, I introduced her to our company and asked her what she expected from this internship. In french there is difference of pronoun. You can be polite and hierarchical with a "vous" or friendly with a "tu". We very soon used "tu" because the "vous" creates a hierarchical distance that I did not wish to have. I assume that every person is equal to me regardless of his or her experience, level of education and so on. Here are some of the questions I asked her to clarify her intention:

  • Why do you have to do an internship? (She explained me that she had the choice between taking a 3-month internship or taking university courses.)
  • Why do you do an internship rather than taking courses? (She wanted to discover the world of work and especially to determine her professional project.)
  • What do you like or do not like to do? (This allowed me to evaluate whether our respective expectations could complement each other, which was the case.)

After a discussion with the company director we decided to invite her for a face-to-face meeting to present the mission we had to offer her. Once the presentation is complete and some details on the paperwork to be completed clarified. I had time to discuss in more detail the following aspects:

  • Where did she want to go?
  • What had she done and learned in the past? (This can be other internships, volunteering, a strong event ...)
  • What was she looking for in this internship?

I wanted to know her better. This discussion allowed both of us to understand each other and to see that we had a great connection. I knew what she wanted to learn and she knew what we expected of her. 

We gave her a few days to reflect on our offer and we were pleased to learn that she wanted to do the internship with us. I therefore made everything possible to ensure that this internship's mission would answer her questions.


Before we started, we defined the framework in which the trainee would have to evolve. I have based myself on reading articles, Reinventing Organization by Frederic Laloux, and on my experience as SCRUM master and also as subordinate to propose the bases of our cooperation. I explained to the trainee that the framework could be adapted to her needs and expectations and that we would adjust it together.

This is the framework of our agreement:

  • Every week we decide together what to do until Friday
  • Daily call to talk about what has been done, remains to be done and what raises problems (the principle of daily scrum)
  • Call / message / e-mail when a question is tapping us
  • "Feedforward" session once a month to determine what needs to be maintained, set up or stopped
  • She makes certain decisions on the basis of the internship mission and asks questions if necessary.
  • She proposes her ideas and implements them
  • She organizes her working time as she wishes as long as she informs me and provides the expected results on time
  • She is responsible for the outcome of her work
  • She chooses herself how to work and can ask me for advice
  • A bad question is a question not asked
  • I am a resource for her

We have adjusted this framework throughout the internship to ensure that we achieve the objectives set out at the beginning. Feedforward sessions and daily calls allowed us to correct the shot when we moved away from our target.

Self-management amplifies...

The results of the self-management exceeded all my expectations, both professionally and personally. My convictions are now reinforced and even more strongly intertwined in my way of working with others.
The things that impressed me are:
  • The force of proposal and creativity of the trainee
  • Quality of work and results beyond my expectations
  • Full involvement of the trainee
  • A relationship that will last much longer than the internship itself
  • A real joy to work together
  • A motivation for both of us that seems inexhaustible
  • Fluidity in the work process
  • The satisfaction of a successful job
  • Problem solved almost immediately
  • Anticipating and preventing future problems

I am delighted with our cooperation and you can sign me up to the recidivist list of self-management. 
Self-management frees the individual and gives her the opportunity to express and develop her talents

Why did it work?

I wondered what were the elements of this successful cooperation and discussed it with the trainee. We came to the following conclusion:

  • The aim of the internship was clear
  • The framework was defined
  • Communication went both ways
  • Trust was established between us
  • Questions and "errors" were allowed. (There is no error in itself but rather learnings to identify.)
  • Ideas were welcome
  • Interests and skills were recognized and appreciated

I would like to thank the trainee who will recognize herself by reading these lines. We have learned enormously and have grown together. I hope that you are now curious to implement & test self-management in your team and see what comes out.

NB: I speak of the trainee and not of our trainee because we de not own her. She is free and has freely shared her talents, creativity and energy with us.

Share your experience by writing a review or share this article with someone who will like it

Yes, it is possible 

The biggest problem we have these days is that we believe that profit and humanism are in opposition. We cannot conceive that a company can be profitable and at the same time "humanist / humanistic". I want to go even further and say that we see profit as something negative and in contradiction with the human values.

What is a humanistic enterprise?

Everyone has an answer to this question and sometimes it is the hippie vision where no one really works, where profit is not important or smoking grass is cool. In fact, a new trend is raising. Where the employee is accountable and respected. That is my definition:

A humanist company ensures that its employees are autonomous, respected, listened and effective to achieve the corporate vision.

Employees are trustworthy, able to make decisions alone, are unique and irreplaceable and can work without supervision.

But another question remains unanswered:

What is profit?

Profit refers to the gains that a person or company can make by selling services or products. Profit is therefore the result of an exchange and can have several forms: material (money, object ...) or intangible (knowledge, experience). Why then so much hatred?

Profit is demonized because it represents the inequalities and the lack of sharing in company.
People receive more or less from the profit depending on their level in the hierarchy. The interdependence and importance of each role what ever its "level" is simply ignored. The issue with such a mindset is that if a role disappears or is not well fulfilled the whole process breaks down and the a company end up in difficulty.

Profit increased by humanism?

And yes to be human at work, pays out! And I provoke you on purpose. I want to see you jump out of your chair, shrug your shoulders, lift your eyes to the sky because even if you can not conceive it now. Being human is more profitable because:

  1. Sharing responsibilities strengthen the accountability 
  2. Sharing Power brings more power
  3. Bases its strength on the one of employees and their union
  4. Helps its employees develop what in return grows the business
  5. Resolves conflicts instead of ignore them
  6. Becomes change
  7. Allows creative and constructive collaboration
  8. Encourages individual initiative
  9. Releases the structures of their immobilities
  10. Seize all the opportunities and learn from its mistakes
  11. Recognizes and addresses challenges


Yes, a company can make profit and at the same time be humanist. You know it in your heart. If living and working conditions are good and aligned with your personal vision & purpose you are more effective than when conditions are bad. Let's change the conditions, improve lives and profit as well.

Aren't you fed up? If so tell me why in a comment;) Thanks

Unless you initiate it

Remember all those business changes that were supposed to make your company more productive, more competitive, more agile… 70% of them failed because they are imposed by the hierarchy who most of the time did not think of the change from employees perspective.

When employees are asked how to achieve the same goals with their means. They come up with practical ideas. For that to happen the hierarchy needs to share its power and trust employees.

Why is it (not) possible in your opinion?

The top 10 unhealthy behavior and their origins

The miniature world in Hamburg. A representation of our reality

The hard truth is:

“It is not enjoyable to work in companies especially when they have an insane culture”

Are you about to start working for a new company? or you are working for one but aren’t sure it has an unhealthy culture? Then, you may appreciate the following warnings.
In order to improve a situation. We first have to be aware of the problems and then understand the secondary gains that result from them. If we want more healthy companies. We must first recognize that there are not. I am not saying that all companies are bad places to work but certain corporate culture enhance the chance to see unethical, discriminatory and unhealthy behavior.

Top 10 of unhealthy behavior

  1. The boss is ALWAYS right, especially when he is wrong.
  2. Employees’ ideas are good, very good but they will not be implemented.
  3. Employees are paid to obey, not to think.
  4. Please do not share in details the department plans to other departments, we are at war!
  5. You will never fully understand who does what outside your team.
  6. The company vision, mission and values are here for the beauty of it, do not dare follow them
  7. Employees will have to fight to prove their worth
  8. Bosses are always in important meetings to decide about the future of the company while employees are facing problems today and do not get support because it is not “strategic”
  9. How can we use the Digital transformation to extract more money from our clients (please do not think about improving the world)
  10. Money, KPIs and goals are more important than an healthy work environment

Hierarchy an old friend

The existence of those problems are in part a consequence of the way hierarchy the hierarchy was built and maintained. The role of the manager come from a time when production workers or blue collars were believed to be unable to organize themselves because less educated than the white collars. At that time, the white collar could manage a production line much more easily because it was “not a complex task”.

Nowadays, the level of complexity at work is increasing quickly. “Nearly 70% [of global executive] admit that complexity is hurting profits”. (Bain and Company). Managers have to take into account information from divers sources and importance. Furthermore, the hierarchy model is now used in companies where employees work in offices and not on production lines.
Managing complexity at work

One person alone cannot deal with the current complexity of the workplace. Managers are supposed to take into account hundreds of information and opinions. They jungle between satisfying the expectations of those higher in the hierarchy and those under them. They sometimes find themselves in situation where the desires of one group is opposed to the desire of the other one. This managing function may seem unbearable but people keep wanting to become a manager for the “advantages” it brings them: status, money and a sense of power. Those advantages grow with the size of your team.

Why does it work like this?

The role of the manager in the current working world is so important that it seems impossible to change it. Everyone of us benefit from this hierarchical system at some level. The manager has power, fame and money. Decisions are taken for employees who do not feel responsible for them and can hide themselves behind their lack of power. Many more secondary gains could be listed. They explain why the hierarchical system is still in place. For now, the secondary gains weight more than the disadvantages of unhealthy cultures.

How to deal with a high level of complexity, then?

Knowing that we won’t be able to change those unhealthy culture from one day to the other. We can think of alternatives that can work in the present system. We could create network of experts and workers. The role of the manager would not be anymore to manage the decision process but to put in contact people with complementary knowledge. The manager will be more a “coach” in the sense that he helps other do their work. For those who know the SCRUM Framework, we could say that the manager is in fact a scrum master. He must ensure that employees have the necessary skills and tools to perform their work. He does what is in his power to alleviate the work of others.

When politics does not serve the company

It is sometimes discouraging to see that internal politics are playing against the company’s interest. Some employees are working against each other in the same company in order to get more budget or justify their existence. Again, secondary gains (more budget, self-worth…) are maintaining this system. The internal politic is a EGO war that people are ready to fight to feel that they exist. Working has become an new way of being. You are your work, job title, and level of seniority in the company. If you lose that you lose who you are and the money that comes with it. Is it really a thing? Are you your job title? Is your worth measured by the level of budget your team got?

Why companies exist?

Some companies have forgotten why they started to exist and ended up running after money because it is at least something you can measure. This lack of vision, mission and purpose is felt in the way people are working against each other. Another flip side of the lack of vision is that entire department are walking around with no clear goals. They do not have a reason to work together and are lead by the secondary gains. By remembering the reason why a business was created you can bring people together again and create more value together. The vision could become the gravity center of the company. People that believe in it will gravitate toward it. Think of all vision lead companies who attract employees willing to make the vision a reality.

Effective communication is difficult

We all know how important communication is but we fail to share information or give feedback to others. In theory we all agree on that but we are limited by our beliefs. We also want less conflict but haven’t learned how to use non violent communication. The following beliefs block a two ways communication: I will not be understood, they do not care about what I need, they will feel attacked if I told them so, We are not at work to talk about ourselves…

Learning to communicate

Communication is something we learned as infant. It constructs our belief system as well as our mental models. We interpret the world through verbal and non-verbal communication. There is so much to discover about the way we communicate and how for example expressing our feelings in a foreign language makes us less emotional because our emotions are linked to the words we learned as children. We need to learn how to communicate differently which means that we need to change our point of view on communication. We must be aware of our beliefs and question them. “is all that I believe true?”

We can learn the inquisitive and non violent communication. Expressing our needs and asking clarifying questions. It takes time but gives so much power to the participants because they are enabled to act and co-create a new reality. Bringing our true self to work goes against societal rules. There is this a kind of personality dissociation where the person at work is different than the one at home. The mask we wear at work is an attempt to protect ourselves by bringing our EGO to the front.

Nowadays, money is an end

Our relationship to money is really interesting. We want it, we want a lot of it but it is bad to have it. Some of us spend it without care other save it like the ultimate truth. We see money as an end but not as an exchange facilitator or a transfer of energy. We speculate about the worth of a companies. We underpay workers in developed countries to create cheap products that will be sold for 10 times their worth. We have learned that money does not buy happiness but we want more of it to buy stuff that are supposed to make us happy.

We are running after money without vision, without a plan. We put money before people. Having money is a must in our societies without it you cannot afford food, housing, education and so on… but is it the only important thing?

Using money, not being used

We can re-frame our vision of money in order to allow it to flow between us. Money can be an enabler because it facilitate exchange between people, we have forgotten it. Let’s remember that money was created by men. Nowhere, in nature do we see money. The problems we face currently with the financial crises, underpaid workers, price volatility are a reflection of what we believe is true.

Money could be used to enable employees to achieve the company vision. We should also remember that we exist without money. We are even if we possess a million or nothing. We are when we share with others and because we are, we live the life that was meant for us.

Don’t you have enough of this superficial work-life?

originaly published: Medium

A philosophical question that could change yours…

Companies try to control everything, control people, control processes, control finances, control marketing, control sources of information, control communication, control, control, control …

Control gives the false impression of mastery

Because we assume that if we do not control things they will go in all directions. This is unacceptable to us.

Work without control

The question I have is, what if we stopped controlling the employees and gave them clear directions. what if we told them what was our goal. In enterprise x, is to sell blabla because we believe that “abc” can solve a problem / satisfy a need.
  • The financial department has to alarm others when expenses exceed incomes.
  • The marketing department has to make sure that our message arrives at the ears / eyes of our customers
  • Of course he production factory has to make sure that the quality is there so that our customer finds the product excellent
  • Those who take care of other things in the company: do you have any ideas on how to improve your work?

Nature as an example

When we stop controlling people, processes and everything else. Things are done “naturally”. Nature was not born with rules and processes imposed by others. No, nature adapts.
A tree that grows in the middle of a meadow without being planted by men has already shown that it had enough to survive. This tree will create shade as it grows. This shadow unfortunately will prevent the grass from growing. “Oh my god Catastrophe we have to control that,” say the good manager. But imagine if you are a business that let the tree grow and who says that the purpose of the tree is to grow as high as possible and to create shade for others. Few years later you can sit under this tree and enjoy a warm summer with your friends.
The tree represents employees in companies.

Why then control everything?

Control is fear. The fear that things escape us but they do. Did things happen exactly as you wanted? Whenever you said that you wanted it? In general, no. Because it’s hard to express what you want. We are very good to say: I like that / I do not like that. On the other hand, it is very hard to express our final goal. Because we do not think about it. We do not ask the following questions:
Why am I here?
What am I doing on this earth?
What is my purpose?
So you’re going to tell me that it is too much philosophy for a company. I say it is missing. There are not enough basic questions asked. I’m fed up with companies that say they are good and who treat their employees like crap, their clients like the morons and the rest of the world like Consumers. I’m not the only one who gets fed up with it. I think that’s a general feeling . But we do not know what to do.

What can we do other than to control? What can you do?

What if we learned how to let go?
Say where we want to go. Fixing our vision in the distance. Where do we want to go? Things come up together. Because ideas come to us and we talk about our purpose to others. Do you want to help me? The person who believes in the same things as you, will answer yes. Besides, I have an idea too. Making businesses healthier. Coming with me?

And you, aren’t you upset too?

Change Management is failing

Change management is an attempt to control change, to make it logical and mechanical. I have studied change management and most of the models that exist out there to explain it. I see change management as a kind attempt to ease the process of change in a world framed by control and top-down hierarchy. When change management fails we explain it with the similar reasons: bad communication, failing top down implementation. Change management is sometimes a coercive attempt to make things happen.

I was always puzzled and fascinated by change management theory and practice. Companies try to manage change when most of the time it those attempts fails. 

Why is change management failing? 

Based on my observation the change attempts are failing because:

  • People impacted by the change are not involved in the decisions
  • People deciding and planning the change are not connected to the practicality of the change
  • Change cannot be "managed" or planned 
  • Opportunities and threats will vary over time 
  • Managers think saying = doing
  • Employees are the last informed of the change and must implement it 
Most of us are conscious of those issues but a lack of alternative drives us back to the change management track.

What should we do then? 

What other options do we have? as Einstein once said: "No problem can be solved from the same consciousness that created it". Which means we cannot solve the change management issue with more change management. We need to go somewhere else. Some organisations have consciously decided to act from a different paradigm & mindset. One where each individual:

  • Identify necessary changes and use the advice process to decide wether to act or not
  • Suggest improvements & put them in place
  • contact experts within and outside the company to inform their decision 
  • Size opportunities 
  • is consulted when the company is endangered. (e.g. A company lost a client that brings 60% of the revenue. The question is asked to all: What should we do? A vote may be held to take a decision or individuals may take action using the advice process as a guide.
I invite you to try this out with a small change decision first and see how it goes. Tell me how it went in the comments and tag me. I will be more than happy to exchange with you on this topic. 

if you think someone in your business contact needs to know about it, share this post with them. I am sure they will appreciate it as much as I will. 

Change Management is dead, long live self-management

The digital transformation is more than just new technologies. It creates new possibilities in the way organizations function and create value. Information circulate much more easily than ever before and we are living into a mind shifting. We saw employees as machines (human resource) that we manageable and numbers that could be replaced and fired as we wished. The fact that we now use machines to do some of the most boring jobs is making us slowly refocus our attention on the living part of organizations. Humans that can learn, be creative and thrive.  Another tendency is the consumers expecting for more and more transparency from companies. Many scandals about hidden information that negatively impacted customers, the planet, and employees made the headlines of newspapers. This awareness about organizational management flaws is getting unacceptable. Most of us are or were employees in companies where we could observe some insane management.

Dark management

Some companies use the vision, mission and values written on their website as marketing tool. They just say what one wants to hear because a good image is primordial. Saying that you foster diversity, equity and empowerment makes you look very good in the mirror and your ego loves it. This is just music to your ears. Yes there are some actions taken in the company to promote those values but they are not meant to change the system.
Beautiful workshops, presentation from the CEO, many discussions are organized but on the daily basis nothing is done to make those values, mission and vision a reality. It is left to destiny. 
Companies are fighting with the idea of transparency. For marketing purpose they will say they are working on becoming more transparent but as soon as you take a look at it you can see people, departments fight to keep things as they were.

Consequences of dark management

Managing from an a ego centered perspective has created many problems and reinforced dark management practices. Those are few examples:
  • there are no clear roles and tasks: some people just spend their time getting busy not getting work done
  • results are less important than appearing busy
  • power games, politics, competition hurt the company development
  • incentives encourage egoistic behavior 
  • resources are wasted
  • information are hidden
  • processes are unclear if not nonexistent
  • software are changed so often that employees cannot keep up
  • software are used as a solution when the problem is structural
  • employees expectations, needs and rights are ignored
  • ...
Does this sound familiar to you? 
It does resonate to almost every person I could speak with. People are very pessimist and do not think it can be changed. I am here to challenge you on that. 

Transforming to survive

The internet changed the way we look at the world because now we can access information almost instantaneously and connect with anybody online.  Our belief systems are evolving and so are our expectation when it comes to business. We should be more aware and taken into account when changes are coming. 
The business world is facing a paradigm shift from the machine oriented management to a management of the living. Companies are living creature made of unique individuals which aspiration, development and implication create value to the world. 

Transparency issues: 

The companies who try to transform need to learn how to become more transparent. It is a complex task because some of them emerged during a very different era of thinking. The companies' culture is sometimes in opposition with the new paradigm.

How can a company become transparent and follow the values, vision and mission that were thoughtfully written on their website?  
  • A diagnoses of the company situation must be made
  • Leadership must accept to share information
  • The company's issues must be acknowledge 
  • Organization structure must be revisited
  • Incentive must encourage transparency
  • Good behavior must be rewarded
  • Bad behavior must be punished
The bigger the company the harder the change and the most dedication is required. After the transformation the company will not look like as it was before. It is like a caterpillar transforming into a butterfly.
On the 22nd of March 2017, at #Cebit2017 , I moderated a panel discussion for the #Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung on the chances and risks that the digital transformation creates for businesses of all size. The panelists represented organizations such as Startup, Research Institut, Medium Sized companies and a world wide known company:

  • Johann Jungwirth, Chief Digital Officer at Volkswagen AG
  • Daniel Schnitzler, Prozess Manager at Tesyo. Tesyo technologies GmbH (Startup)
  • Kevin Füchsel, Leader of Strategie, Marketing und Communication at Fraunhofer IOF (Research Institut)
  • Herr Gerschewski, Geschäftsführer at IndiKar (Medium Size company) 

We discussed about the implication of the digital transformation on IT-Security, Process optimization,  innovation and the connection of companies to people thanks to the internet presence.

Here are my top 10 nuggets of knowledge that I want to share with you:
  1. Companies recognize the importance of IT-Security but a lack of standardization makes cooperation between companies difficult
  2. IT-Security standards should not be enforced by companies but by the government
  3. The politic should develop a stronger framework for IT-Security
  4. Computers are giving us more innovation power and won't replace all workers. 
  5. The education system should adapt to bring the new required skills to future workers and simplify long life learning 
  6. Process optimization is complex because one must take into account the human resistance to change
  7. The real challenge is to support people during change
  8. Big companies are learning how to work with agile methodologies by creating center of competences
  9. Startup and medium companies are now more visible. Client now look for information in the internet in order to evaluate the company. This mean that companies must manage their presence. 
  10. An online presence is not only having a website. It is also offering information about your company on social media such as YouTube, Facebook, Twitter

Earlier in Europe the digital transformation was only seen as a danger for companies.I could sense a change in perspective during this panel discussion. Organizations of all size are trying to take advantage of the digital transformation. Now companies experiment new ways of working in order to remain competitive in a world where the internet as blurred the frontier between 80's science fiction and reality.

It is your turn to tell us what you think. Comment this post and tell us what the digital transformation is bringing from your perspective.

Erstes Workshop in Stuttgart am 8.03.2017 um 13:30

mehr Infos hier:

How could you improve feedback sessions? We all received and gave feedback but it can be puzzling as it may end up into a blaming or a congratulation session. As a manager you want to give constructive feedback in order to improve your team effectiveness. You may also be reluctant to give feedback because it is personal and can create discomfort. As an employee you may be looking for a way to get the feedback you need when your manager is not taking the lead.

Finding an approach that represents you and does not feel useless is sometimes complex . On one side, there is the feedback giver who wants the feedback to encourage the person to deliver a specific outcome or a new behavior. On the other side, there is the feedback receiver who may feel attacked because the comments may mean that he is not "good enough" or the feedback do not support him to improve his work. Feedback sessions can be an highly emotional moment when both participants come with some kind of angst. Giving and receiving feedback is hard when we focus on the "potential negative reactions". One key to success is to always focus on facts that can be observed from both sides.

Let's concentrate on how to give "negative" feedback in this article. You should always give positive and negative feedback in order to balance the discussion. I cannot believe this person is doing it all wrong!

A good feedback to see a change is a Fact feedback.

Can you remember a time when someone told you something sounding like "You are stupid! You should not have done that!" and your immediate reaction was "fight / flight or freeze". This did not help change anything. You should focus on facts and explain why the result of action "A" was not what you expected. For example, one employee may deliver bad oral presentations. You will not start saying that the person is a bad speaker. In stead you will mention facts like: I realized that you'r saying to many "hum", you do not look at the people.... Then you will give the person a detailed description of what you expect from them in the future. Help them to focus on those areas of improvement.  

Do not give feedback, give feed-forwards.  

Feedback are focused on a past that you cannot change. Focusing on the future actions that the person should take is empowering. It is your role as a feedback giver to frame the desired behavior the person should show. You have some homework to do before the feed-forward meeting. Observe and take notes about the feedback receiver's actions and list what you really expect from them. Be clear about what you expect from the person!

Steps to prepare for a feed-forward session

This method should be used to prepare for each individual session. The Feedback preparation starts way before the meeting itself. For each person, you should keep the following list up to date. 

Observe behavior: 

A leader that I know writes his observation on post-it and keep them all in a personal folder. He opens it few weeks before the meeting in order to clarify what the employee will need during the feed-forward session. 
  1. List positive behavior you observed. Use examples to back up your list.
  2. List new behavior that the person should start showing up. Use examples to back up your list.
  3. List undesired behavior that the person should stop. Use facts and example to back up your list.
Yes, there is a lot of repetition but please back up every observed / desired behavior with an example.

Prepare for the meeting: 

Are you sure that your suggestions as backed up with facts? Avoid being judgmental because it will not help the person grow. We grow when we believe we can learn more not when we think we are going to fail.
  1. Prioritize the list of behavior and create a list of things you want to discuss with the employee. Everything you observed may not need to be discussed. 
  2. Make sure you are talking about specific facts and please, not alternative facts ;)
  3. Do not make it personal. Do not attack the person.

Lead the meeting using facts to support your argumentation

  1. Explain that the aim of the meeting is to help the person develop itself and become better at what they do 
  2. Describe the positive behavior that you appreciate.
  3. Describe the new behavior that will help improve his / her work and give examples of how the person could implement it in the daily business. 
  4. Describe the behavior that you think the person should not have anymore and explain why. 

After the meeting: FOLLOW UP!

As a feedback receiver there is nothing less discouraging than not hearing from our manager after taking the decision to work on yourself. Plan follow up meetings with the person on a weekly or monthly rhythm. It is important that you follow up on the new behavior that the person should show and remind kindly that some behavior are not acceptable.

I hope you enjoyed this article and please share it with people who may need it or find it interesting.

I have worked in different companies and always wondered why change never happened. I studied Organizational Sciences in an attempt to understand why change strategies fail 70% of the time. I have read, discussed and observed bad communication, ineffective leadership, self´sabotage and many other factors that influence negatively change. I also found reinforcing information on how to create a functional change process. I decided to become a consultant in order to accompany companies. I am sure we can increase the change success rate by taking into account the human side of change. As individuals change is difficult even if we aim for a better work-life balance or to become a better employee / leader. Putting our ideas into action is difficult as we have to change our habits. At the organizational level it becomes even more difficult. It is not only one person trying to change it is a team, a department, a whole company... This group dynamic is difficult to apprehend. In this post I want to warn you about a trap in which I have seen too many companies fall.  

The consultant point of view: Managing everything but change

As a consultant. I faced disappointment. I was called in to analyse a company process and realized that the thing expected from me was to confirm that something went wrong. The decision to do something about the "problematic" process belonged to a higher level of management which I was not in contact with. I had little to no influence on the change process itself. It made me think and think again about how I could improve my intervention in the future. I realized how important it was for me to not only look at problematic processes but also do something about it. When I asked people involved in the process few months later. I heard the same complains from employees. Unfortunately, I am not the only consultant facing: Resistance to change. It is for sure a 2-ways dynamic where both the consultant and the client could better work together. 

Pain is the only reason why people and organization change but we are like frogs in boiling waters. We wait until it is too late...

Now, why do some companies change while others just cannot do it? It is all about feeling pain. If the current situation is not painful or unpleasant enough then companies stay where they are. Think of those frogs that are put alive in a pot of water. The cook increases the temperature until the water boils. The frog remains in the water because it does not feel the temperature increase, the pain. It will only react at the last moment but it is too late. The frog has no more energy to escape. This frog syndrome takes place in companies too. They are boiling in their own water. Some consultants outside the pot see it coming and try to alert the company. It does not listen because it is so comfortable. They know their pot very well and do not care about finding another one. They do not suffer. In companies, you need very alert and sensitive employees that cannot stand the increase in temperature. You need pessimist frogs. The one that jump out as soon as something is wrong. The one that see the danger coming and alert you. First of all you need to listen to them. If you are not ready to listen. Do not come later and complain about a failure.

Metrics as an alarm system to avoid the frog syndrome...

Let's get out of the frog comparison for a moment. How do you know that the situation you are in, is one that endangers your company? Let's look at some metrics because decisions without data is like Bungee jumping without a rope, deadly. You can ask your employees through interviews or questionnaire about their repetitive difficulties. You can use the rich picture methodology to help you visual processes. You can also analyse the employee turnover rate, the satisfaction level or the employee engagement. If those numbers are going in the wrong direction, you must think about the frog.

Alarm system & intervention crew

Putting an alarm system in place is a first step. The next one is to create a change intervention crew because why have an alarm system if it is not linked with a police station? The crew can be made of current employees at different level of the company or organizational development professionals. They will help recognize critical signs while understanding your company and how it ticks. This group should be responsible for the problem analysis and change implementation. The most important is to listen to your employees and develop a solution with them. Communicate about the planned change. Reuse the same metrics to evaluate the evolution. It should help you decide if you have still something to improve.

Learn to listen to your company

if you liked this post or find it useful share it!

I would love to hear from you and learn more about your experiences and thoughts, just comment this post and I will get in touch with you. 

Es ist manchmal seltsam, wie wir Unternehmensprobleme lösen vor allem, wenn es darum geht Anderen zu helfen. Wir geben Leuten die Lösung, in der Annahme, dass sie es nicht allein schaffen können, oder wir geben den Mitarbeitern die Werkzeuge und das Wissen, die sie dafür brauchen. Wir sehen es täglich in Firmen. Auf einer Seite kontrollieren einige Chefs  jede Bewegung Ihrer Mitarbeiter. Auf der anderen Seite geben Führungspersönlichkeiten ihnen die Kraft, ihre Ziele zu erreichen. Ich habe schon den Unterschied zwischen Chef und Führungspersönlichkeit in einem anderen Beitrag erklärt (auf Englisch). Die Chefs sind nicht bereit, ihr Wissen zu übertragen. Führungspersönlichkeiten im Gegenteil unterstützen das Lernen und geben Hinweise, wenn Mitarbeiter sie benötigen. Manchmal wiederholen wir einfach, was wir gelernt haben, ohne wirklich zu verstehen, was es bedeutet. Wir wissen, dass 1 + 1 = 2, aber wissen wir warum? In ganz bestimmten Situationen kann 1 + 1 gleich 1 oder 3 sein. Es hängt davon ab, was diese Zahlen und Zeichen repräsentieren.

Wir haben gemeinsam Wissensstrukturen erschaffen, die eine schnelle Erweiterung von Ideen ermöglichen. Leider vergessen wir manchmal, dass die Person vor uns nicht das gleiche Verständnis oder Wissen hat. Es ist der Fall, wenn wir versuchen, ihnen zu helfen oder wenn wir denken, dass sie wissen müssen, was 1 + 1 macht. Wir gehen davon aus, dass wir es besser wissen, obwohl wir in der Tat nur unseren Weg kennen und nicht ihren. Wie viele Konflikte entstehen, wenn eine Person oder eine Abteilung einer anderer helfen will? Sie bekommen eine gebrauchsfertige Lösung vorgeschlagen aber nehmen diese nicht ernst oder lehnen sie ab. Das kommt Ihnen bekannt vor?

Ja, Sie waren in einer Situation, wo jemand versucht hat Ihnen zu helfen, obwohl Sie das nicht wollten. Als Führungspersönlichkeit sollten Sie herausfinden, ob Ihre Mitarbeiter Hilfe oder Befähigung brauchen. Mitarbeiter brauchen Hilfe, wenn das Problem nur einmal auftritt oder die Lösung ein ganz spezifisches Wissen benötigt (z.B. Softwareproblem). In diesen Fällen macht es nicht unbedingt Sinn, eine neue Fähigkeit beizubringen. Ich würde Sie ermutigen, neue Fähigkeiten beizubringen, wenn die Probleme häufiger auftreten.

Es gibt 6 Hauptunterschiede zwischen  Befähigung und Hilfe. Hier sind sie:


  1. Sie verstehen den Hintergrund von einer Person / Gruppe
  2. Sie beurteilen Kompetenzen
  3. 2-Wege Kommunikation
  4. Sie schlagen mögliche Wege vor, um das Problem zu lösen
  5. Sie stellen Werkzeuge zur Verfügung und entwickeln die Kenntnisse Ihrer Mitarbeiter
  6. Sie begleiten und geben Hinweise


  1. Sie kommen als Retter
  2. Sie beachten nicht die Hintergründe der Menschen
  3. Sie unterschätzen die Fähigkeit der Mitarbeiter zu lernen
  4. 1-Weg Kommunikation
  5. Sie verwenden technische Sprache, die nur Sie versteht
  6. Sie geben Richtlinien vor, ohne ihre Konsequenzen zu erläutern
Mitarbeiter ermächtigen, bedeutet die Verantwortung an Mitarbeiter zu übertragen. Wenn man Mitarbeiter hilft, entsteht eine Abhängigkeit zum Helfer. Es ist wahr, dass wir alle voneinander abhängig sind und dass jede Abteilung eine Spezialisierung hat. Leider herrscht die Überzeugung, dass IT-Leute die HR nicht verstehen oder nicht davon lernen können oder dass die Finanzabteilung nicht Hand in Hand mit R&D arbeiten kann. Das lähmt jedoch die Firmen. In solchen Firmen zu arbeiten, erlaubt nicht das Grundproblem zu verstehen und zu lösen. Dies kann dazu führen, dass die Probleme wieder auftreten und den Teufelskreis füttern, wo der Helfer immer wieder helfen muss.

Ich sage nicht, dass es leicht ist, von der Hilfe der Menschen zur Befähigung zu wechseln. Ich sage es ist ein Muss, wenn wir in Unternehmen arbeiten wollen, in denen nachhaltige Lösungen gefunden werden sollen. Menschen sind kreativer, Fragen sind Chancen und Lernen ist eine gemeinsame Sache. Es ist auch lohnender zu sehen, dass Menschen über ihre Schatten springen und Lösungen für Probleme finden, die sie sehr gut kennen.

Wer ist der kompetenteste ein Problem zu lösen, wenn nicht der der das Problem hat?

Menschen brauchen Ihre Hilfe nicht, sie müssen in der Lage sein, ihre eigene Probleme zu lösen.

Hier ist, wie Sie von "Hilfe" zu Ermächtigung gehen können.
  1. Stellen Sie Fragen, um den Hintergrund zu verstehen
  2. Beurteilen Sie die Kompetenzen und das Wissen
  3. Entwickeln Sie eine 2-Wege-Kommunikation mit Feedback von beiden Seiten
  4. Definieren Sie gemeinsam Lernbedürfnisse und Wege, um Probleme zu lösen
  5. Bringen Sie Fähigkeiten und Kenntnisse bei
  6. Begleiten Sie Ihre Mitarbeiter zur Lösung

Ermächtigen Ihrer Mitarbeiter hilft, deren Engagement zu fördern. Wir müssen auch berücksichtigen, dass nicht jeder Mitarbeiter den Wunsch hat, befähigt zu werden. Sie wollen nur geholfen werden. Es ist Ihre Rolle, diese Notwendigkeit zu bewerten und sicherzustellen, dass Ihre Mitarbeiter engagiert sind.

Ich schätze wirklich, wenn Sie meine Posts teilen und sie kommentieren.  Schreiben Sie einen Kommentar unten. Ich freue mich darauf !

Original in Englisch hier: Empower vs. Assist your employees