Friday, June 17, 2005

Unselfishness: A Principle of Good Management?

This quotation headed the agenda of a recent CTE management group meeting.

But above all the [community members] had to learn to live together amicably. The inevitable difficulties of living with people whom they might not find personally congenial would put the equanimity they were supposed to have acquired in meditation to the test. It was no good radiating compassion to the four quarters of the earth if members could not be kind to one another.

Karen Armstrong , Buddha (2001)

This was a principle to which The Buddha was deeply committed as a guide for how communities of priests (the Sangha) should function. In CTE we have focused more on individuals; on aligning work in CTE with individual professional development goals. I have asked that the latter be clearly stated and operational. But in reading Armstrong’s passage, I was struck by another possibility. Suppose our overriding priorities were supporting another (our professional development partner?) or perhaps all other Management Group members in attaining their goals. How would this change the climate in which we work? Are we kind enough to each other?

Something to reflect on.


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