Monday, 2 March 2009
The March of Folly
“Wisdom”, wrote the famed American Historian, Barbara Tuchman, is “the exercise of judgment acting on experience, common sense and available information” (1984). The opposite of wisdom is “folly”.
Folly in leadership is:
* The pursuit of counter-productive policy. Mankind in the form of Troy’s citizens is addicted to pursuing policy contrary to self-interest.
* Denial of a feasible, alternative course of action. The feasible alternative – to burn the Horse – is always open.
* Relying on group policy-making. The reasoned decisions of an individual leader are often no match for the “groupthink” of a collectively-determined policy.
* ”Wooden-headedness”. Refusing to benefit from experience, and assessing a situation in terms of preconceived fixed notions while ignoring or rejecting any contrary signs.