Process a waste of time? LO13312

Timo Jdrvilehto (
Sun, 20 Apr 1997 00:34:43 +0300

Replying to LO13297 --

Lindsey Jarrell wrote:

>> A leader (facilitator) is best when people barely know
>> he exists.
>> When his/her work is done, his aim is fulfilled.
>> They will say - we did this ourselves.

>>Peter Jones

>Peter, I couldn't agree with you more. I use the same technique when
>unsure of a source :-)

>The lines you quote are taken from a poem entitled "Leadership". Of
>course, the author escapes me now (Russian I beleive), but it hung on
>my office wall for a long time. It is short, concise and meaningful.

As I have used this poem in an article about consciousness, co-operation
and power, I would like to cite you the end of the article (if you like
you may read the whole article in our electronic paper AINO "English papers"). I found the poem
in the cited form above in a book by Carl Rogers, but it is originally
from Tao Te Ching and written (probably) by LaoTse.

"The basic problem in the existence of the modern man may be that he
falsely believes to be able to reach, by forcing or ordering other people,
results, although the only thing what he gets are only indicators of the
results, covers without the content. Language is not the same as the
object it describes, or literary theory same as the action itself. All
concrete goals or orders set from without lead human beings to wrong
paths. The concrete reflection of the result of action - a ship or a
property - is not the same as the result of action. The palpable objects
are only reflections or indicators of the results of action; the result of
action is never something visible, or measureable, but means an instant of
transition from one act to another, a possibility for new action and
development. The ship means a new possibility to go overseas, the property
the possibility to distribute it to the poor people.

The real results of action are something that may never be exhaustively
described by words. Speech and language mean only possibilities to create
organization leading to the common results of action. The identification
of the indicator of result with the result itself leads to stopping of
development, fixing oneself to that being visible. It is therefore no
wonder that people who want to have money stay always poor, or that the
pupils obeying the orders of the teachers never will understand the
contents of the materials they are learning.

A real leader leaves always the result open and lets the orders be formed
in the organization by communication. And if the organization is to
fullfil its task, every member of the organization must be aware of the
whole organization, its character and real intents or visions. Such
consciousness may grow only then when all members of the organization are
creating the common visions and trying to find their most optimal place in
the organization leading to the common results. And the leader's role: it
is that of the listener and interpretor, representing that part of the
system integrating and presenting what is wanting to be expressed by the
whole system.

And then when thanks are given, every real leader - in contrast to the
politicians who always want to show what they have done - steps aside and
people will say: "We did this ourselves". "

Timo Jarvilehto
University of Oulu, Finland


Timo Jdrvilehto <>

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