Leading Change - Overcoming the Ideology of Comfort and the Tyranny of Custom

Discussion in 'Masonic Education' started by Blake Bowden, Oct 15, 2010.

  1. Blake Bowden

    Blake Bowden Administrator Staff Member

    Just bought my copy.


    Leading Change - Overcoming the Ideology of Comfort and the Tyranny of Custom, by James O'Toole, hard bound, 282+ pages, publisher price $25.00, our price CA $23.43, other USA $21.75, foreign $23.00, from SCRL, PO Box 6587, Buena Park CA 90622.

    Every Grand Master, if still open to new ideas, every DGM, every SGW, every JGW, every Master, if still open to new ideas, every SW, every JW and everyone who aspires to any phase of leadership should and must read this book.
    This is not a Masonic book but it sure hits close to home considering our leadership and change situation for, after all, we are a business. Try these few sentences on for an example:

    "When left to run a natural course, all organizations become more important than the individuals in them. They become hierarchical, bureaucratic, rule-dominated, and change-resistant. That is the course of inertia. And the individuals who lead organizations become uncaring, cautious, overly conservative, and obsessed with regaining their own power. Even if they decide to side with the angels and advocate change, they will do so in a self-defeating autocratic way. Indeed, they will feel compelled to use the powers of command because the group behaves with the obstinacy known as institutionalized irresponsibility."

    This might sound a bit rough and is not indicative of our present, and I emphasize present, leadership. Let's consider what the editor of Masonry At Work, the bulletin of the Santa Barbara Masonic organizations had to say in their November 1995 issue:

    "Perhaps we need to change our philosophy in the way we do business and make some changes to meet the need and demands of our ever-changing society. Maybe ballots should be sent out to all the members on proposed changes/ revisions and be guided by the ballot of all the members. There would be changes and just maybe they would be for the best. Our G.M. and P.G.M. have, for years, been aware of our problem and have done their best to recommend change, but the voting members have not supported their recommendations."
    Now back to the book to substantiate this view:

    "Indeed, in the chapters to come, we seek an explanation of why followers so often resist the very leadership that they claim to crave. To keep this analysis practical, we focus on why employees of corporations (and Freemasons?) -- and business executives themselves -- almost always resist changes that would benefit their organizations greatly."
    Leading Change has a very good story on General Motors' leadership and resistance to change in the years following World War II and one can easily draw a parallel to Freemasonry's experience during that same period.
    GM had years of success without stressing quality. In the words of the legendary Alfred P. Sloan, "Styling is more important than quality to buyers." Their business boomed, for a time, while they neglected quality in cars, and applications came to us in large numbers, for a time, while we neglected qualtity in education. Our biggest fault was in not putting our members in a position to enable them to discuss Freemasonry with others.
  2. JTM

    JTM "Just in case" Premium Member

    You mean to post this in the lounge?

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