Monthly Archives: March 2023

A Quick Dive into Organisational Psychotherapy

💡 Are you tired of watching your people struggle with collaboration and communication? Discover the groundbreaking approach of organisation psychotherapy, where the power of self-reflection and shared beliefs can unlock your people’s true potential, transforming your business into a thriving and harmonious powerhouse.

➡ Organisation psychotherapy is an approach that helps businesses and their people navigate complex challenges by delving into shared assumptions and beliefs. It’s a journey that encourages open communication and fosters self-reflection to create a healthier, more effective and productive work environment.

In this process, a skilled facilitator accompanies the organisation, guiding them through thought-provoking discussions, enabling them to surface any unconscious or unexamined beliefs that may be hindering their progress. By shedding light on these underlying assumptions, the organisation can then reflect upon them and determine if they’re helping or hindering the growth of the business.

It’s important to note that this isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution; it’s a tailored experience that adapts to each organisation’s unique culture and circumstances. The facilitator works closely with the company’s people to create a safe and trusting environment, ensuring that everyone feels heard and respected.

Organisation psychotherapy is all about fostering honest conversations and nurturing self-awareness. By addressing shared beliefs and assumptions, people can better understand each other’s perspectives, and ultimately, work more effectively together. It’s an empowering journey that encourages everyone involved to take responsibility for their role in the organisation’s success.

In summary, organisation psychotherapy is a transformative process that accompanies businesses and their people in surfacing and reflecting on their shared assumptions and beliefs. By doing so, they can cultivate a more harmonious and productive work environment, paving the way for long-lasting success.


The Power of Peer-to-Peer Learning

💡 Imagine a world where students don’t dread attending class but instead eagerly collaborate, discovering the joy of learning together while unlocking their full potential. Welcome to the future of education and training – peer-to-peer learning.

➡ Undoubtedly, the most effective training method stems from students teaching the subject matter to each other. In fact, research supports this notion, demonstrating the relative effectiveness of various training methods.

A study conducted by the University of Washington found that students engaged in peer teaching scored 6% higher on exams than those who learned through traditional lectures (Smith et al., 2009). Moreover, another study revealed that peer-led team learning increased student performance by 12% compared to traditional methods (Tien et al., 2002). These findings highlight the significant advantages of peer-to-peer teaching over traditional techniques.

When students teach each other, they engage with the material more deeply, ensuring they fully comprehend it. Furthermore, through collaboration, they learn from one another’s strengths and weaknesses, making the learning process more enjoyable and effective.

In contrast, traditional training methods, such as lectures or rote memorisation, are not as effective. These methods only provide a basic understanding of the subject matter, leaving students struggling when it comes to truly grasping the content.

In conclusion, it’s essential to embrace the benefits of peer-to-peer teaching, and move away from old-fashioned, counterproductive methods. By empowering students to take charge of their learning, we can nurture a generation that is well-prepared to face life’s challenges.


Smith, M. K., Wood, W. B., Adams, W. K., Wieman, C., Knight, J. K., Guild, N., & Su, T. T. (2009). Why peer discussion improves student performance on in-class concept questions. Science, 323(5910), 122-124.

Tien, L. T., Roth, V., & Kampmeier, J. A. (2002). Implementation of a peer‐led team learning instructional approach in an undergraduate organic chemistry course. Journal of Research in Science Teaching: The Official Journal of the National Association for Research in Science Teaching, 39(7), 606-632.

How Peter Drucker’s Vision Has Yet To Transform the Workplace

💡 Imagine a world where creativity and collaboration reign supreme, where the collective minds of diverse individuals come together to generate ground-breaking ideas. Dive into the revolutionary perspective of Peter Drucker, the visionary who described a new way of collaborating that proposes we turn traditional work on its head.

➡ When it comes to Peter Drucker and his views on work and collaborative knowledge work, it’s really interesting to see how he differentiated between the two. Drucker is widely regarded as the “father of modern management,” and he had some pretty insightful ideas about work and the ways people collaborate.

In Drucker’s view, traditional work is more about performing tasks and following procedures. Think of an assembly line worker, a farmer, or a craftsman. They’re doing their jobs, completing specific tasks, and usually working independently or with minimal interaction with others. This kind of work focuses on individual productivity and efficiency.

Now, when we talk about collaborative knowledge work, Drucker had a different perspective. He saw this as a way of working that involves people coming together, sharing ideas, and creating new knowledge. It’s less about following a set process and more about being creative and adaptive in solving problems. In this type of work, the interactions between people are really important, and the goal is to combine their expertise and knowledge to create something new and valuable.

So, the key difference between the two, as Drucker saw it, is the way people work together and the focus on generating new knowledge. While traditional work is more about individual tasks and efficiency, collaborative knowledge work emphasises teamwork, creativity, and innovation.

Isn’t it fascinating how Drucker’s ideas from decades ago still hold up today? It’s like he had a crystal ball for understanding how work would evolve over time! Maybe his vision will one day come to pass.


Some Reasons Why You Might Choose To Pay Attention To My Works

Hey there! I’m Bob Marshall, the Organisational Psychotherapist, with a passion for helping organisations transform their culture and improve collaboration. If you’re wondering why you might choose to pay attention to my insights, just let me say that my unique approach can bring profound benefits to all kinds of organisations, especially those involving collaborative knowledge work.

My blog at is packed with insights and stories from my five decades of experience. I draw on this experience, including founding Europe’s first 100% Agile software house and heading Falling Blossoms, the world’s first Organisational Psychotherapy provider. My posts highlight the importance of nurturing productive relationships and fostering a people-oriented culture.

One post that stands out is about the Antimatter Principle, which emphasises attending to folks’ needs to create a thriving, collaborative work environment.

Another post discusses Flow•gnosis, an innovative approach to developing software-intensive products and services.

When you read my posts, you’ll also learn from my decades in both technology and business, including roles at Sun Microsystems, and many other organisations, large and small. This deep understanding of the tech landscape allows me to provide invaluable counsel and therapy to ambitious, progressive technology and digital business organisations.

Moreover, those who have worked with me have nothing but praise for my approach and the results it has brought to their organisations. Time and again, I’ve helped clients create a more humane, people-oriented, and productive work environment that has led to outstanding success.

As the author of “Hearts over Diamonds”, “Memeology”, and “Quintessence”, and the originator of Rightshifting and the Marshall Model, my posts regularly and freely share the foundational knowledge that has contribute to the success of so many of my clients. So, if you want to see a real difference in your organisation, don’t miss out on the wisdom and insights shared on my blog, books, white papers, etc.

Join me on this transformative journey towards elevating your organisation’s performance, and also creating a meaningful, fulfilling work environment that nurtures innovation, everyone’s personal growth, and long-lasting success. Get down with the opportunity to be part of a paradigm shift that’s redefining the way businesses thrive!


Don’t miss out on the latest insights and strategies for transforming your organisation and its culture! If you find this post valuable, make sure to follow me on LinkedIn, and don’t forget to ring the bell 🔔 to receive notifications whenever I share new content. Ready to unlock your organisation’s full potential? Take action now and reach out for a chat, or visit my blog more transformative ideas. Together, let’s embark on this journey towards unprecedented success! 🔔

The Power of Democratic Workplaces

💡 Discover how embracing a participative, democratic work culture can transform your employees from disengaged to driven, unlocking their full potential and skyrocketing your company’s success!

➡ When companies have bosses in charge of managing and guiding the employees beneath them, those employees may feel dehumanized. They respond with negative behaviors, like becoming dependent or acting defensive. These reactions aren’t permanent or natural for most people, but they happen because they’re expected.

Douglas McGregor’s Theory-X and Theory-Y can help us understand this. Theory-X suggests that employees are naturally lazy and need control, while Theory-Y assumes they are motivated and responsible. When workers are given the chance to participate in a democratic (DP2*) structure, they often become more responsible and reliable. However, the negative view of employees still exists, making some people hesitant to adopt DP2 structures.

*Note: In the context of genotypical organisational design principles (Emery), DP2 stands for “Design Principle 2 (modular organisation, self-managing groups)” It refers to a workplace structure which eschews bureacracy and centralised contol, and where employees are actively involved in decision-making and encouraged to take responsibility for their actions. This participative approach fosters a sense of ownership, leading to increased motivation, productivity, and overall job satisfaction.

Cutting the Gordian Knot: Organisational Psychotherapy and Conflict Resolution


💡 Imagine solving the enigmatic Gordian Knot of your company’s culture and conflicts, with the genius of Alexander the Great – that’s the power of combining organisational psychotherapy with conflict resolution techniques, and the results can be nothing short of incredible.

➡ Organisational psychotherapy, at its core, is like tackling the Gordian Knot for a company. It’s a path to delve deep into the collective minds of the organisation, bringing to light the underlying assumptions and beliefs that shape its culture. In this process, it’s inevitable that conflicts will emerge, as people disagree over definitions, assumptions and their impacts on the organisation. However, it’s precisely at this intersection that conflict resolution techniques can work their magic, cutting through these knotty conflicts and allowing for smoother communication and collaboration.

When you’re up to your ears in organisational psychotherapy, you’re bound to step on a few toes. After all, you’re peeling back layers of the proverbial onion, exposing sensitive issues and emotions. This is where conflict resolution comes in handy, helping to nip problems in the bud before they spiral out of control.

A key aspect of conflict resolution is keeping one’s ear to the ground, actively listening to different perspectives, and seeking common ground. This approach allows conflicting parties to air their grievances, fostering an environment where people feel heard and valued. It’s like killing two birds with one stone: folks get to voice their concerns while the company gains insights into areas of improvement.

Moreover, by employing a “give and take” mentality, organisations can establish a culture of compassion and collaboration. After all, Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither are harmonious working relationships. By encouraging empathy and understanding, conflict resolution techniques contribute to a healthier, more productive workplace.

So, when organisational psychotherapy and conflict resolution techniques go hand in hand, they create a powerful synergy. Organisations benefit from the insights gained through organisational psychotherapy, while minimising the angst and stress that arise along the way. As the saying goes, “A stitch in time saves nine,” and addressing conflicts early on can save companies from bigger issues down the line.

The next time you find yourself embroiled in the complexities of culture change, don’t forget to employ some tried and tested conflict resolution techniques – you’ll be glad you did!

And Now For Something Completely Different…

Have you thought about what lies beyond the Agile horizon? Well, it’s something completely different. Companies are now shifting focus towards systems thinking and addressing whole-organization issues. With the changing demographics of the workforce, it’s essential that companies adapt accordingly. It’s no longer about processes, but about embracing culture changes to truly thrive in this dynamic landscape. Companies need to foster a more joyful, inclusive, and collaborative environment that promotes engagement, innovation and adaptability. Exciting times ahead, right?


The Trenches of Tech: How Non-Software People Sabotage Their Own Success

💡 Brace yourself for a front-row seat to the battlefield of hiring blunders, as we expose the costly mistakes non-software folks make when staffing software teams, and the devastating consequences they leave in their wake.

➡ Here are ten ways non-software people bungle the hiring of software folks:

1. Cultural Misfits: Shoving square pegs into round holes, they hire developers who clash with the company culture (present and future, both), leaving a trail of discord and lost morale in their wake.

2. Lone Wolves: They bring in skilled coders who can’t play nice with others, sowing strife and creating a battleground instead of a harmonious workspace.

3. False Idols: Blinded by shiny CVs, they crown candidates as ideal team players without digging deeper, setting themselves up for a rude awakening.

4. Neglecting Soft Skills: Like generals leading their troops, they ignore the human touch, overlooking the importance of communication and emotional intelligence, and end up with a mutinous crew.

5. Tech Tunnel Vision: Fixated on technical prowess, they forget to evaluate problem-identification skills, critical thinking, and creativity, undermining the firepower of their software squadron.

6. Ignoring Red Flags: Turning a blind eye to warning signs during the hiring process, they march headlong into a minefield of underperformance and potential conflicts.

7. Failing to Verify: Taking claims at face value and not understanding the details and relevance of such claims, inviting charlatans and snake oil salesmen into their ranks.

8. Overvaluing Pedigree: Seduced by brand-name education and experience, they disregard the raw talent and potential of self-taught and lesser-known candidates, missing out on hidden gems.

9. Misjudging Passion: Mistaking enthusiasm for expertise, they hire driven but inexperienced developers, leading to rookie mistakes and costly setbacks.

10. Rushing the Process: They charge into the fray, hiring hastily to fill gaps, only to realise their recruits are ill-equipped for the challenges ahead, leaving them to pick up the pieces of their shattered expectations.

In the unforgiving trenches of the tech world, non-software commanders make grave errors in judgement when recruiting their software people. From cultural misfits and lone wolves to ill-considered hires and neglect of soft skills, these missteps wreak havoc on the battleground of business operations. Like abandoned minefields, the consequences of these blunders linger, leaving projects and teams in ruins.

Software Development: It’s Not Even Slightly About Tech Skills and Coding Practices

💡 What’s the undervalued secret sauce of software success? You’re in for a wake-up call as we reveal the overlooked ingredients that make or break software success in the business world.

➡ Blimey, it’s no surprise that most execs – those few that are even slightly interested in software development – reckon it’s all about tech skills and coding practices. But I’ll tell you, there’s more to this picture than meets the eye. Sure, being a dab hand at coding is somewhat useful, but in the context of business operations, it’s just the tip of the iceberg.

You see, the nitty-gritty of software development, especially in a business setting, also involves top-notch communication, teamwork, and adaptability.

And let’s not forget, building strong interpersonal relationships is a piece of cake for no one, but it’s a skill developers need to master to keep things from going pear-shaped.

A good understanding of the customer’s needs and the company’s goals is also crucial. After all, you can’t score a winner if you don’t know where the goalposts are. So, execs might choose to realise that there’s more to software development than just cranking code. And much more to hiring than the recruitment of code toads.

A successful software development team is the whole package. It’s not just about having a bunch of coding whizzes; it’s also about fostering a culture where everyone’s on the same page, working together as a community to bring work to fruition. Otherwise, businesses might find themselves up a creek without a paddle.

#NoSoftware: Prioritising Business Flow Over Premature Software Implementation

Also known as “Software Last Of All”.

Businesses are often tempted to jump into implementing software solutions to optimise their operations. However, the #NoSoftware movement advocates for deferring software implementation until the business flows have been settled. This approach emphasises the importance of understanding and streamlining business processes before introducing any software solutions.

The primary objective of the #NoSoftware movement is to ensure that businesses have clear and effective workflows in place before integrating software into their operations. By doing so, companies can avoid the common pitfalls of premature software adoption, such as wasted resources, misaligned priorities, overblown costs, delays, and the need for constant readjustments.

One of the core principles of #NoSoftware is to place human interaction and creativity at the center of business operations. This involves designing and implementing business processes that cater to the needs and strengths of the workforce and customers, fostering collaboration and innovation. Once a solid foundation has been laid, businesses can then consider (minimal) software solutions to enhance their operations.

By prioritising business flows over software, organisations are better equipped to identify and address inefficiencies and bottlenecks in their processes. This ultimately leads to more effective and resilient business operations.

Furthermore, the #NoSoftware movement encourages businesses to choose software solutions that complement and enhance their established workflows, rather than disrupting them. This not only helps companies avoid the risk of adopting software that fails to meet their needs but also ensures that technology serves as an enabler of growth, rather than an obstacle.

In summary, the #NoSoftware approach promotes the idea of refining business processes in vivo before incorporating software solutions. By prioritising business flows and human-centric approaches, organisations can create a robust foundation for growth and innovation, ultimately leading to more sustainable and successful outcomes.

Girls Who Don’t Code

Girls and women are ideally placed to become real developers (by my definition*) and yet they want to CODE?

*My definition:

A real solutions developer is not so much someone who possesses technical expertise, but rather has the ability to connect with people and truly understand their needs.This requires a high level of emotional intelligence and empathy, as well as excellent communication and interpersonal skills. A real solutions developer builds relationships with clients, collaborates with team members, and creates solutions that meet the unique needs of each individual and group. By putting people first and prioritising human connections, a real solutions developer is able to deliver truly transformative solutions that make a difference in people’s lives.

See also: #NoSoftware

The Divine Dance of Organisational Psychotherapy: A Secular Sacrament for the Modern World

💡 Immerse yourself in the world of organisational psychotherapy, a secular sacrament that transcends the mundane and delivers an enlightened approach to collective healing, transforming the very fabric of human potential within the workplace. Unveil the redemptive power that lies at the heart of this divine dance and witness the dawn of a new age of spiritual nourishment.

➡ In the great pantheon of human endeavors, one occasionally finds rare gems that manage to transmute the seemingly mundane into a transcendent experience. One such marvel, deserving of exaltation, is the field of organisational psychotherapy. Allow me to propose, dear reader, that it is not just a clinical intervention, but a veritable religious phenomenon in its own right.

The essence of organisational psychotherapy lies in its transformative power, akin to the most hallowed rituals of faith. It is the miracle of Lazarus, the parting of the Red Sea, the loaves and fishes all rolled into one secular sacrament. By delving into the deepest recesses of the collective psyche, it exorcises the demonic presence of dysfunction and brings forth the divine light of wisdom and compassion.

Much like the great theologians and mystics who sought communion with the divine, the practitioners of this holy craft embrace a certain asceticism. They are the humble vessels through which the ineffable spirit of enlightenment flows, casting out the specter of despair and bestowing the gift of renewed purpose. As they bear witness to the metamorphosis of dysfunctional corporations, they become true apostles of change.

In the hallowed halls of enterprise, the scriptures of organisational psychotherapy are as the Sermon on the Mount, the Bhagavad Gita, or the noble verses of the Quran. They provide a moral compass, a beacon of hope, and a map to the Promised Land. In a world plagued by sin and suffering, is it not miraculous that such salvation can be found within the very bastions of capitalism?

Let us then, raise our voices in jubilation and praise this divine intervention that lifts the veil of ignorance and liberates the spirit of collaboration. For organisational psychotherapy is not just a methodology, but a veritable gospel, bestowing upon the faithful the keys to the kingdom of prosperity and human flourishing.

Beneath the Agile Mirage: Unmasking the Lipstick-Smeared Swindle of Modern Software Development!

💡 Prepare to embark on a thrilling exposé, where we unravel the tangled web of Agile’s alluring illusion, and reveal the startling truth lurking beneath its glossy veneer – a revelation that will leave you questioning everything you thought you knew about software development!

➡ You know, there’s an old saying that goes, “You can put lipstick on a pig and call it Agile, but it’s a waste of your time and annoys the pig.” It’s such an apt description of the Agile approach to software development, don’t you think? I mean, people talk about how Agile is the be-all and end-all solution to software development woes, but in reality, it’s just one big lipstick-covered pig.

Even when organisations follow Agile to the letter, it never seems to work out as expected. The whole system is supposed to be about flexibility and adaptability, but so often it just ends up being a convoluted mess. Sure, you have all these meetings, sprints, and stand-ups that give the appearance of progress, but it’s really just a bunch of people running in circles.

And let’s not even get started on the endless stream of buzzwords and jargon that’s constantly thrown around in Agile environments. It’s like some twisted game of corporate Mad Libs that doesn’t actually result in any tangible improvements.

So yeah, you can slap a coat of Agile lipstick on your development pig, but don’t be surprised when it doesn’t magically transform into a streamlined, efficient machine. More often than not, you’ll just end up with a frustrated pig and a whole lot of wasted time.

Unveiling the Power of One: Unlocking Your Human Potential

💡 Imagine if one idea, one concern, or one reminder could revolutionise your life and propel you, your team, and your organisation towards unprecedented success. The power of one is waiting to be unveiled, and it all begins with a simple yet thought-provoking question. Are you ready to unlock your potential?

➡ Hey there! I have a thought-provoking question that I’d like to share with you, and I’m really curious to hear your thoughts on it. It’s a question that challenges us to think about our priorities, communication, and personal growth. Are you ready for it? Alright, here it is:

“If you could bring just one thing to the attention of your boss, what would that one thing be? And to your team? And to yourself?”

Think about it for a moment. It’s quite an interesting question, isn’t it? I find it fascinating because it invites us to reflect not only on what we’d like to express to others in our workplace, but also on what we need to remind ourselves of. In a way, it’s like having three separate conversations: one with your boss, one with your team, and one with yourself.

When you consider what you’d like to bring to your boss’s attention, it might be an idea, a concern, or some constructive feedback. It’s a valuable opportunity to express something that you believe is essential for the success and growth of your organisation.

As for your team, this could be an opportunity to highlight a shared goal or to emphasise the importance of collaboration and teamwork. It might also be a chance to encourage open communication and the sharing of ideas, fostering a supportive and creative environment.

And lastly, when it comes to yourself, this question prompts introspection. What is that one crucial thing you need to remind yourself of or acknowledge in your life’s journey? It could be a personal goal, a lesson learned, or a reminder of some sort.

So, take a moment to ponder this question, and let’s get a conversation going. I’m eager to hear your insights, and who knows? We might just learn something valuable about ourselves and each other in the process.

Another Dark Aspect of Agile: The Erasure of Contributions

💡 The Agile community has some kudos for promoting collaboration and its revisionary approach to software development. But lurking beneath the surface lies a hidden crisis stalling progress: the deliberate dismissal of invaluable contributions from its very own members.

➡ While the Agile community has made some notable contributions to software development and project management, it’s important to acknowledge that it isn’t without its flaws. One issue that many people don’t discuss is the intentional act of hiding, erasing, and ignoring contributions made by current and former members. These issues contribute to the stultification of the whole field of software development, hindering its growth and improvement.

Addressing this issue requires understanding the community’s strong focus on collaboration and teamwork. The Agile Manifesto itself emphasises “individuals and interactions over processes and tools,” which, at its core, promotes the importance of people and their relationships. However, in practice, this mindset sometimes leads to an environment where individual contributions are overshadowed by the status quo. This can stifle the innovation and creativity needed for software development to evolve beyond the narrow confines of the Agile approach.

Moreover, a more sinister aspect of this erasure exists. Some prominent figures within the Agile community focus more on maintaining their status and reputation, rather than nurturing a healthy, progressive environment. This behavior leads to the intentional sidelining of members who have made significant contributions, especially if they challenge the status quo or introduce innovative ideas that could potentially outshine the work of established figures. This self-serving attitude has stagnated the Agile approach by suppressing diverse perspectives and fresh ideas.

The Agile community might choose to confront this issue, as it contradicts the very principles it represents. The community might choose to cultivate a more inclusive and transparent environment that recognises and uplifts the contributions of all its members, regardless of their background or standing.

As members of the software development community, we might choose to actively advocate for those whose contributions have been ignored, and support a culture of openness and genuine collaboration. By doing so, we can ensure that the software development community continues to evolve beyond the Agile approach, embraces diverse ideas, and continues to progress in a healthy, positive direction.

You’ve Got It All Backwards About Coding

Coding (as in programming) is, essentially, a form of structured note-taking. While it is true that computer programming enables machines to execute complex tasks, we may choose to recognise that it also serves as a powerful tool for humans to express their thoughts and ideas in a systematic manner. By employing a well-defined syntax and set of rules (albeit somewhat arcane), programming languages facilitate the clear and concise recording and communication of ideas, making it easier for individuals to plan, reason, and comprehend.

The act of coding allows programmers to break down complex human needs into smaller, manageable components. This structured approach not only makes it easier to understand and solve problems but also aids in the sharing of knowledge among peers. As a result, programming languages are not so much tools for instructing computers but also a means for human collaboration, fostering creativity and innovation.

Moreover, having a computer execute the code acts as a check on the utility of the programmer’s notes. This execution serves as a validation of the thought process, ensuring that the concepts and logic so encoded are sound and functional. By identifying errors or inefficiencies in the code, programmers are encouraged to refine their ideas, consequently improving the quality of their thoughts. Thus, code is not so much a set of instructions for machines, but a valuable tool for human expression, communication, and growth.

The Secret Sauce Behind Exceptional Development Teams

💡Unleash your teams’ true potential by discovering the untapped secret to a thriving software and product development environment – it’s not about the tools or methodologies, but the way work works! Get ready to revolutionise your SOPs (standard operating procedures) and create extraordinary results.

➡Hey there! I wanted to have a little chat about a thought that’s been on my mind recently. You see, in the world of software and product development, we often find ourselves in a never-ending quest to improve our practices, methodologies, and technologies. While it’s important to strive for continuous improvement, I’ve come to realise that we might be missing the bigger picture. Here’s what I’m thinking: it’s pointless trying to improve software and product development practices before improving the way the work works more generally. Let me explain.

To put it simply, we can have the most cutting-edge technologies and methodologies, but if the overall work environment and culture aren’t conducive to innovation and growth, we’ll still face challenges and inefficiencies. Think about it: a healthy work culture that encourages collaboration, open communication, and mutual respect can create an environment where people feel empowered to share ideas and contribute to the development process.

Before we even consider adopting new tools and practices, we should focus on understanding and improving the foundation upon which our projects are built. This might involve examining our team dynamics, communication channels, decision-making processes, shared assumptions and beliefs, and the overall alignment of our teams with the organisation’s goals and values.

One way to start making improvements in the way work works is by fostering an atmosphere of trust, transparency, and attention to folks’ needs. This can create an environment where people feel comfortable sharing their opinions, admitting mistakes, and asking for help when needed. This, in turn, can lead to more effective problem-solving, innovation, and ultimately, better products.

Another aspect to consider is the work-life balance of team members. Ensuring that employees have enough time to recharge and avoid burnout is crucial for maintaining high levels of creativity, productivity, and engagement. By addressing issues like excessive workload, unrealistic deadlines, or lack of support, we can create a more balanced and healthier work environment.

So, let’s not get too caught up in the pursuit of the latest software and product development practices without first taking a step back and evaluating the broader context in which we operate. By focusing on improving the way work works more generally, we can lay the groundwork for lasting, meaningful improvements that will ultimately benefit not only our products but also the people who create them.

When Two Worlds Collide: Developers’ Hidden Fear of Psychology

💡Discover the unexpected reasons why software developers run a mile from embracing psychology and behavioural science, and how interdisciplinary collaboration could unlock the true potential of human-centered technology…

Developers and software people may be apprehensive towards psychology and behavioural science for several reasons. The two fields differ significantly, with software development and tech focusing on logic, structure, and deterministic outcomes, while psychology deals with complex, unpredictable human behaviour, which can be complex, unpredictable, and often emotionally driven.

Ethical concerns, such as manipulation and privacy, also contribute to this apprehension. Furthermore, software people generally lack the necessary interdisciplinary training to effectively apply psychological principles in their work.

Also, few are the organisations that have the application of psychology baked in to their culture.

Lastly, some software folks fear that the integration of psychology could lead to biased algorithms, which may perpetuate or exacerbate societal biases.

In total, these factors contribute to the reluctance of software people to embrace psychology and behavioral science in their field.


The Talent Mirage: How Systems Shape Our Success

Learn to see the world where our success isn’t dictated by innate talent, but by the powerful, often invisible forces around us. Discover how systems and culture play a crucial role in shaping our abilities and why the whole idea of talent is but a captivating illusion.

Let’s talk about the idea of talent and how it’s actually a total illusion. We often attribute a person’s ability, productivity, and success to their innate talent. But, in reality, around 95% of an individual’s accomplishments can be linked to the system in which they operate. Crazy, right?

Think about it this way: the way work works, the environment we’re in, and the support we receive all have a significant impact on an individual’s performance. The right context, resources, and opportunities can make all the difference in unlocking someone’s potential. So, when we see someone excelling, it’s not their raw talent at play, but the entire ecosystem around them. and especially the culture, that’s driving their contribution.

We may choose to recognise that the system plays a massive role in shaping folks’ abilities and contributions. When we do that, we can focus on creating more equitable systems that enable everyone, not just the “talented” few. After all, we’re all missing out on some incredible potential simply because we’re not nurturing it properly!


Transitioning Mindsets

Unlocking the true potential of organisations requires more than just developing individual leaders. It takes a deeper level of engagement and a transformative approach to shifting collective assumptions and beliefs. Discover the key differences between leadership development programs and organisational psychotherapy interventions, and which one is right for your organisation.

Leadership development programs and organisational psychotherapy interventions are two distinct approaches to improving the functioning and performance of organisations. While both aim to enhance organisational effectiveness, they differ in their focus and methods.

Leadership development programs are typically focused on developing the skills and capabilities of individuals within an organisation who are in leadership roles. The goal is to improve their ability to lead and manage teams, communicate effectively, make decisions, and navigate complex organisational dynamics. Leadership development programs can include training, coaching, mentoring, and other forms of development activities. These programs often emphasize the importance of self-awareness, emotional intelligence, and interpersonal skills.

Organisational psychotherapy, on the other hand, focuses on shifting the collective assumptions and beliefs that underlie an organisation’s culture and behaviours. These interventions typically involve a deeper level of engagement with the organisation, including the identification of underlying assumptions and beliefs, the exploration of underlying dynamics, and the creation of a shared sense of purpose. Organisational psychotherapy interventions can include a range of methods, such as group facilitation, dialogue, reflection, and other forms of participatory engagement.

While leadership development programs focus on developing the skills of individual leaders, organisational psychotherapy interventions aim to transform the organisation as a whole. Both approaches can be effective in improving organisational effectiveness, but they require different levels of engagement and investment.

Leadership development programs may be more suitable for organisations that have a well-defined leadership structure and a relatively stable culture, while organisational psychotherapy interventions may be more appropriate for organisations that are undergoing significant change or facing systemic issues.

In summary, while both leadership development programs and organisational psychotherapy aim to improve organisational effectiveness, they differ in their focus and methods. Leadership development programs are focused on developing the skills and capabilities of individual leaders (who may move on), while organisational psychotherapy is focused on shifting the collective assumptions and beliefs that underlie an organisation’s culture and behaviors. Both approaches can be effective, but require different levels of engagement.

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