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Create Breakthroughs in Performance by Changing the Conversation - Werner Erhard

Create Breakthroughs in Performance by Changing the Conversation - Werner Erhard

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Published by Tim20C
This article about Werner Erhard's work in creating breakthroughs in performance management was written by Perry Pascarella and published in the June 15, 1987 issue of Industry Week.
This article about Werner Erhard's work in creating breakthroughs in performance management was written by Perry Pascarella and published in the June 15, 1987 issue of Industry Week.

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Published by: Tim20C on Mar 08, 2011
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01/08/2013

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-
oi"'.'
CRfATE
 
"If
you
seriously examine any action,
you
find there
are
always two
sides
of
it:
the
side
from
which
you
can
explain it and the
side
fromwhich
you
can
produce
it."
action, you
find there
are
always two
sides
of
it:
the side
from
which
you can
explain
it
and
theside from
which
youcan
produce
it.
After
a
recent
two-dayrise
inthe
stock
market,
for
example,
I
read an article
that masterfully
described
that
rise
,
analy
z
ed
it,
and
ex
plained
it.
However
, e
ven
though
I
now
fully
understand what happened,
I
amnot
going
to
betmy
life
savings
on
my ability
to
predict th
e
next
one
.
"In
individual and organizationalperformance,
most
ofus
attempt
to
produceaction by
working
in
theafter-the-factrealm
of
description
,
analysis
,
explanation
,
andprescripti
on.
Rarely
do
we
consider that
producing
anactionrequires
a
whole different
way of
looking
at
it.
If
you
want
tohave
a
dramatic impact
on
performance
,
you
need
access to
the
source
ofaction
."A
spectator can describe
what
I'm
doing on
the
tennis
court.
He
is
living
in
the
realm of
evaluation
and
expla
nation-but
I'm
playing in the world
ofaction.
While
there
is a
relationshipbetween his description
and what
is
occurring
on
thecourt,the
two
areclearly
not
the
same.
We
seldom
think
aboutthis sort
of
distinction
,
but
"failing
to
make
thissimple distinctioncan
lead us to
beingsatisfied
with
an
explanation about
action
and
may
hide
from
our
viewthesource
of
action,"
says
Mr.
Erhard.
EXECUTIVE
TRAINING.
Werner
Erhard
is
not in thetennis-coachingbusiness
.
Rather
,
he
is
in the business
of
coaching
executives
to
empower
themselves
and
those
with whom
theywork
.
Intereston the part
of
some
corporate leaders
in
the possibility
of
individualand
organi
z
ational
break
throughs in
performancehas
creat
ed a
mark
et
for
his
services.
Some people discount the man
as a
rip-off artist;
others
regard him
as a
leading-edge
thinker
in the
fie
ld
of
hum
an
performance
a
nd
effectiven
ess.
More
than
a
half million people
par
ticipated in his
est
training
befor
ehe
52
INDUSTRY
WEEK/JUNE 15,
1987
retired
it
in
1984.
The ne
xt
year
he
introduced
a
new program
for
indi
viduals-"the
Forum
,"
which
has
drawn
tens
of
thousands
of
partici
pants.
Now
,
working
in
a
new
organization devoted
tomanagementandorganizations
,
he
has
captured serious
attention among
business
and
govern
ment
officials.
At the invitation
of
the
Soviet
Government
andwith the
sup
port
of
the
U.
S.
State
Dept
.,
he
has
been working with
Soviet
managers
and
educational
leaders since
1981.
Consultants are listening
to
what he
has to
say,
and
some
have
joined ranks
to
help him
advance
a
new model
of
what management
is
allabout.
I
have
been
exposed
to
some
of
his
thinking through
severalofhisaffiliates
before
and
since they joined his
newest
venture,
Transformational
Technologies
Inc.
(TTl).
Fifty
established consulting
firms have
now purchased franchises
in
the
northern
Cal
ifornia-based network
,
which
is
dedi
cated
to
creating
a
new
frame
ofrefer
ence
for
management thinking.
TTl
affiliates
have worked
with
suchcompanies
as
GM
,GE,
Procter
&
Gam
ble
,TRW,
Lockheed, Weyerhaeuser
,
Manville Corp
.,
Phi
lip
Morris,
and
the
Royal
Bank of
Canada.
Several
haveplaced
their
upper-level
managersin
TTl's
Center
for
Management
Design.At
$35,000
per
manager, these corpo
rations are
paying
to
be
trained
and
licensed
touse
the
TTl
technology inside
their own
organizations. Thecenteralternatesfour two-week
training
sessions
with
on-site
courses at
the
contracting organizationfor
a
year.
NEW POSSIBILITIES.
Forget
the man
.
Forget
the
organization
around him
.
Explore
a
bit
of
the thinkingthat
Wer
ner
Erhard
and
his colleagues are generating.
Take a
walk
on
the
leading
edge.This
thinking
and
language
are
difficult
forthe
uninitiated
to
grasp
.
Even
after
many
conversations over
the
lastfour
years
with
his
associates,
attendance at
a
three
-
day
workshopwithan
affiliate,
and
discussions
with
Mr.Erhard himself,
I
findit
tough
to convey
the
"message" to
others. That
makes
it next
to
impossible
to
put
it
in
writing,
but
I'll
explore
the
possibility
of
expressing some
of
it
in
near-conventional terms
without
reducing
its
value
.
The
best way
seems
to
present
a
few
key
distinctions
in the
TTl
vocabulary
:
"A
managergetspaidfor
the future
which
isn't
going to
happenother
wise." Although
pay may
be based
on
past
performance,
what
the
company
is
really
countingon
is
the manager's
intervening
insome
way to
change thefuture course
of
events.
"Managersneed
powerful
access
to
thefuture,
and
not
the predictable
future," says Mr.
Erhard
.
"While mostmanagers
spendtheir
time
attempting
to
predict the
future
accurately-and
while
that's
valuable-the
bestmanagersare able
to
generate
a
future
which
was
not
going
to
happen
otherwise-that
is, a
future which
was
not
predictable."Managers
tend
to
think
of
them
selves
as
making
choices
among
optionsavailable
to
them. Mr
.
Erhard
makes
a
distinction
between options

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