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Extra resources for Leading Systems: Lessons from the Power Lab
3 Not the most fitting profile for Mr. Power Lab. So, as one might imagine, all of that tough action at the programnegotiations, hostage taking, confrontationrequired great energy on my part (it was there that I saw clearly the straight-line connection between terror and bravery), and it changed me profoundly. I flew back to Boston. I was exhausted. I was met at the airport by my wife and daughters (then 11 and 9 years old). I needed Page 20 sleep, but my daughters, not having seen me for two weeks, had other plans.
In Power and Position (1977) 1 I described some of the familiar stories and "system diseases" that were being played out regularly in our Power Labs: breakdowns that system members experienced as personal failings but that in fact were systemic. In The Possibilities of Organization (1986, 1992)2 I described the familiar organizational story that ends with burdened Tops, oppressed Bottoms, torn Middles, and righteously screwed Customers. In Space Work (1992)3 I described the familiar stories in which peers regularly fall out of partnershipTops into turf warfare, Bottoms into groupthink, and Middles into alienation.
System Story II: Righteous Warfare between Culture and Counterculture 144 15. System Story III: The Terrible Dance of Power 153 16. ): The Dominants and the Others 159 17. "I" and "US" 165 Epilogue: An Experiment That Did Not Fail 175 Notes 191 Index 195 About the Author 202 Page xi ACKNOWLEDGMENTS The Power Lab was born at a time when it was taboo to even talk about power in most corporate settings; power simply did not exist, and the Lab would not have survived those early years if it weren't for the support of Warner Burke and Vlad Dupre at the National Training Laboratories.