Organizational Tyranny: 2 Masks of Core Value Terrorists

Posted by Walt Brown on Oct 22, 2018 2:42:54 PM
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Having strong, toothy core values will smoke and flush out the folks I call "core value terrorists", or CVT’s. We must eliminate these CVTs from our teams, lives, and organizations. 

Tyranny (noun): Cruel and unfair treatment by people with power over others.

I see this issue manifest inside my client’s teams all the time. They always wear one or both of the following masks, and both of these terrorists are originally considered absolutely "indispensable".

Terrorist Mask 1: Mensa Member Michele.

Mensa Michele is super smart, so technical, and so skilled. How will we ever survive without Michele? You know who I’m talking about. She wields her power over the team, hides key details, holds things back, holds you hostage, and doesn’t fit your core values. It is tyrannical behavior and it must stop for the good of the team.

Terrorist Mask 2: Industry Al or Contact Connie.

Al has been with us forever, he has so many relationships in the industry, and everyone on the outside likes Al. How can we risk life without Al? You know who I’m talking about. Al wields power over the team with the threat that he is indispensable, holds things back, holds you hostage, and doesn’t fit your core values. You make exceptions for Al. However, it’s tyrannical behavior and it must stop for the good of the team.

I like to remind my clients of this fact:

"The Graveyard is full of indispensable people."


The sooner you get rid of these “indispensable” terrorists, the sooner you can start to really grow your company. You need to do two things:

1. Establish your core values and give them teeth.
2. Establish a very clear accountability and a teamwork structure.

These two things will cause Al, Connie, and Michele to either change, self select themselves out over time, or your team will help you push them out.

This is one of the blogs that put me on the path to writing The Patient Organization where we share the magic of making and keeping the 7 Promises outlined in the book.

Topics: Your core values, Your people

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