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Management and Organizational Behavior Essay

This is a reaction paper on the book ‘Leadership and Self Deception: Getting out of the Box’, by the Arbinger Institute. This will therefore discuss how I felt about the topic in the book and the reasons why. The book is about self deception which is described in dialogue between Tom Callum, a new employee for senior management position Zagrum Company, with Bud Jefferson, the executive vice president of the same company. An excerpt of the dialogue is quoted below with Bud Jefferson talking to Tom Callum saying the following words: “The bigger problem was that I couldn’t see that I had a problem.

” Bud paused for a moment, and then, leaning forward toward me, he said in a lower, even more earnest tone, “There is no solution to the problem of lack of commitment, for example, without a solution to the bigger problem—the problem that I can’t see that I’m not committed. ” Bud also added: “Tom, there’s a technical name for the insistent blindness I exhibited in San Francisco. Philosophers call it ‘self-deception. ’ At Zagrum we have a less technical name for it—we call it ‘being in the box. ’ In our way of talking, when we’re self-deceived, we’re ‘in the box.

’ From the above the word self deception is defined. We will use the meaning in the following paragraphs. If self deception is incapacity to see the reality of the problem, the next question is: Could it happen to everyone? Dr. Peck said “Life is series of problem. ” If there is truth in what Dr. has said then self-deception could happen to everyone because every body will really have a problem. Hence the issue should be to become aware of the problem so that solutions could be made accordingly. Hence Dr.

Peck suggested that discipline is the basic tool we require to solve life’s problems. He argued that without discipline we can solve nothing and that with only some discipline we can solve only some problem and with total discipline we can solve all problems. Given that problem solving is a reality, failure therefore to see that there is a problem could be a dangerous or pathetic situation. To illustrate, I had a friend who just did not know that he is sick and that he is dying of cancer which he failed to detect earlier.

Before he realized to do some prevention he was already dead. In the case of every living thing, failure to recognize the problem is the most damaging because that would mean wrong use of freedom and intelligence bestowed to us. This applies to business organization since they also have life to sustain. They must continue to serve their customers otherwise these organizations are sick or in danger of dying. What could be the consequences of self deception? Not knowing what the problem is, one cannot solve the problem.

Not being able to solve the problem will cause the problem to create more pressure and the greater the pressure the less are the available choices. In psychology we have the so called neurosis and character disorders which are the result of the result not balancing responsibility. When one assumes too much responsibility he is neurotic, while the one with character disorder assumes little. That could be also the consequence for people who will assume too much problem and those who simply cannot see that there is a problem.

In the book that we are reacting upon, character disorder as a consequence would be the closest thing to happen. The consequence for failing to heal the disorder is delay in emotional maturity. If we apply that to Zagrum, that would be restricting the normal growth of the company that could amount to killing the company slowly. How then to solve self –deception? Discipline through openness and transparency is the best solution. People must be ready to accept accusation especially if they are true since that is the only way where one would not have him self-deceived.

We need the eyes of other to reflect what is hidden in us. Socrates said that we should know ourselves and that could be found in disclosing about ourselves to other so that they get reflected to others who will help us see the truth in us. This is one of the lessons of the book on Self-deception as dreamed by Bud for the Zagrum Company. Bud was quoted saying to Tom: “At Zagrum, Tom, our top strategic initiative is to minimize individual and organizational self-deception. ” Bud did have good experience about self deception which he wanted to impart to Tom.

He realized that problem would be most damaging. Self deception may not be easily recognized by some or they may get hidden because of stubbornness, pride and simply ignorance. Although an open person is vulnerable, there are more advantage to self-disclosure than self-deception, the consequences of which are simply damaging. To conclude, it may be stated that a problem that half well define it half solved. Wrongly defined problem is not solving the problem. Avoiding the problem will cause problem to run after you. A health organization accepts the reality of problems because of objectives set.

Objectives-attainment involves series of problems that must be anticipated and solved. A problem in life is bound to arise and the reality is that life is difficult. Indeed life is a series of problem to be solved, hence by not acknowledging the problem, there is an attempt to escape what is reality and to escape reality would be more painful in the long run. Work Cited: Peck, S. The Road Less Traveled, Simon and Schuster, 1978 Arbinger Institute , Excerpts of Leadership and Self Deception. Getting out of the Box’, {www document} URL, http://www. arbinger. com/C2/ArbingerHome/default. aspx? Page=Home, Accessed October 30,2006


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