The majority of leaders and organizations I have known operate in Stage One or Stage Two. Most of these are fine men and women, stuck in human and institutional paradigms which guarantee that their futures will look pretty much like their past. For Stage One and Stage Two leaders and organizations, their personal and cultural point of view is more important than anything else. Their very sense of survival is tied to their already existing beliefs about what is possible and what’s right or wrong with technology, politics, identity, and economics. Anything that threatens this point of view is endured, ignored, suppressed, or attacked. This identity-driven mental defense mechanism, which we all share, prevents good ideas from turning into Unified Action. It prevents both leaders and organizations from taking risks and seeing possibilities with others who have different points of view. Without evolving leaders who are able to transcend their own point of view, Homo Sapiens will arrive at a development-al dead end.
Courageous, unified, and coordinated action is widely recognized as important in public, private, international, interdisciplinary and inter-govern-mental situations. Too few players are willing to step up to this personal and global challenge. Uncommon commitment is missing. From greed to self-interest, to the immovability of existing structures, there are many reasons why Unified Action seems impossible and the exercise of power and position is the best leadership we get.
For developing Stage Three Leaders on earth and in space, there are
hypotheses to test:
1. If a small group stands for the emergence of Stage Three Leadership for the future of humans in space, it will propagate broadly over time despite entrenched disagreement and resistance. Theories, political philosophies, models and intelligent proposals open the conversation and point the way. What will move these from concept to reality is what people stand for, and what they are irrevocably committed to.
2. Stage Three Leadership is imperative for the future of humans in space and on earth, to prevent the catastrophic negatives that have occurred internationally and institutionally throughout history.
3. Stage Three Leadership needs to be demonstrated now, in preparing for a future in space, if we expect to achieve it there. We can’t get there from here. We need to put the organization of the future in place now in order to create the organization of the future. Flexibility can’t be invented from bureaucracy.
We can expect little agreement for a new paradigm of Stage Three Leadership or for the Future of Space. In the absence of broad agreement, the development of Stage Three Leaders calls for training and mentoring in certain uncommon assumptions and sensitivities. These assumptions include:
Unified Action is the new bottom line. A new bottom line looks crazy to others with different bottom lines. Unified Action will find little agreement as the new bottom line in a world where money, power, technology and territoriality are primary. Unified Action as the new bottom line is not simply a matter of process but a matter of context, process, and outcome together. A new bottom line of Unified Action requires an emotional and spiritual context of relationship, a physical process of coordination, and a commitment to outcomes that include peoples’ needs for freedom, money, technology and social order. Institutional and social forms we will create from this new bottom line cannot be known at the outset. With a new bottom line, all we have is conviction, uncertainty, and faith.
Leadership is plural. It takes two to see one. Without some dedicated ‘other’ committed to our commitments, our own blind spots keep getting in the way of our higher intentions. An effective coach is the bridge across the gap between who we are and who we can become. Without dedicated mentors and coaches to help us achieve ‘escape velocity’, it is difficult to sustain Stage Three Leadership individually or Unified Action together.Download Article 1K Club