The Cure…….

Ok, following the blog yesterday you have noticed your Sick Organisation Syndrome going on. You have flagged it, got a skilled medic in, decided it is worth trying to save, and are trying to  plan the treatment. What next?

Organisations – rooted. remember, in the word Organic! –  are living breathing creatures with many living and breathing creatures inside them who need them to work. Most of them will be people you care about who need their jobs, and who joined the organisation for a reason – whatever that reason was it is worth remembering that there was, at some point, a reason. We like to be proud of where we work – sure, we need the job, but layered onto that are the other reasons like pride in our achievements, status, opportunities to contribute and be valued, basking in the reflected glory of the organisations reputation, working with people who share some of our ideals, enjoying a particular style of leadership, contributing to a Greater Good. Many people working particularly in the Third Sector have chosen the sector for a mashup of those reasons, chopped up with good intentions and a desire to Do Something Worthwhile, with a side order of self interest. All of those are good motivators and salary is the icing on the cake of incentives.

Saving your organisation can mean a couple of things: stripping away the canker and curing the problem from within, or giving it to someone who can. As I noted in my last piece, the medic administering the cure will have to be someone with outstanding and muscular medical skills or someone who has nothing to lose in the trying. This means it can be someone within who understands the underlying issues and the need for prompt and fearless action, or someone from outside who does not depend on the organisation for survival. If you like, in order to keep the organisation alive you can attempt to cure it yourself or you can give it to another medical team to cure and keep.  Keeping it within means there should be a good understanding of the causes and the potential pathways up, enabling takeover means a fresh start with new injections of cash and ideas and a more objective view of the internal toxins. You pays your money………  Either way there is a need for ruthlessness and skill. Those living breathing people huddled inside the failing organisation need to know they are needed and that there is a motorway out leading towards a better future. Without someone in the driving seat who can inspire, value, encourage creativity and share vision it will continue to fail.

Your organisation, however troubled it is right now, has roots and had meaning. If you can find those roots, assert that meaning, and find the right people to treat the disease you are part way to cure and recovery. Next time we will look at the care plan and recovery programme that will follow the treatment and the cure!

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