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Tuesday, August 22, 2020

Support for Slowing Down

From time to time, I trawl through cyberspace looking for anything relevant to Slow Leadership. Here are some recent “catches” from my net.

You won’t be surprised that I was instantly attracted to a site whose tag-line is “Slow Down Now: The almost serious antidote to workaholism.” Here’s how they explain themselves.
Slow Lifesytle Manifesto

We believe multitasking is a moral weakness.

We would never needlessly indulge ourselves in hurry or rush. If a thing is worth doing it is worth doing slowly or not at all.

We value focus and relaxed concentration. We value being here and now.

This is not to say we don’t believe in hard work, we do. We believe it exists. We have witnessed it on occasion, and, in times of recklessness, we have even engaged in it. But we believe there is a better way.

Slowing down is a skill that must be learned. We understand that it’s not for everyone. The Ancient Greeks understood that we work in order to have leisure. If it was good enough for them, it’s good enough for us.
I couldn’t have put it better!

Management Issues is always worth a look, with lots of up-to-date articles and links to research and ideas. I was quickly caught by part of a posting which said:
A team of business consultants recently wrote an article in the McKinsey Quarterly about four traps executives often fall into when a business is failing. I was struck by how often these same mistakes occur on an individual level:

1. Confirmation bias. We look for information that reinforces what we already believe and ignore information that doesn't.

2. The sunk cost fallacy. When we've already spent too much money (or time), we invest yet more. Your grandmother knew this as, "Throwing good money after bad."

3. Escalation of commitment. Not giving up becomes a matter of pride—even when giving up would be the sensible thing to do.

4. Anchoring and adjustment. We raise our estimate of the eventual pay-off because we've invested so much time or effort.
The more hard work and stress that you put into some activity, the less you are willing to give it up, even when it’s clear to everyone else that it won’t work and was a poor idea from the start. That’s another consequence of today’s obsessive management style: a stubborn unwillingness to change when change is obviously essential.

Thanks also to Management Issues, I now know that I have the head of the Roman Catholic church on my side in pressing the ideas of Slow Leadership.
Workaholics take note. According to Pope Benedict XVI, working too hard is never a good thing. In the middle of his summer break, the Pope has reiterated the thinking of the 12th-century St. Bernard of Clairvaux, who warned against "the dangers of excessive activity, whatever the condition or office held, because many occupations lead to a 'hardening of the heart' and suffering of the spirit."

"This warning is valid for every kind of occupation, even those involving the governance of the church," the Pope said.
That’s powerful backing, I guess!

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