How adept are you at listening to the periphery?  I mean the people in your organization who aren’t on the management team.  Maybe even those on the very fringe, a single toe in, new to your team.  According to Peter Senge, developing this critical skill will be important for the leader of the future who needs to learn to build partnerships across boundaries.  Here’s the idea:

Because "organizations are coercive systems," "listening to the ‘periphery,’ those who do not share the views of the management mainstream," will become a skill that more and more leaders will need because, increasingly, the management mainstream will have only limited understanding at best of the forces shaping culture (p. 41, The Leader of the Future 2: Visions, Strategies, and Practices for the New Era)."

What do you think?  Think you know what’s shaping your culture?

Listening to the Periphery
  • Listening to the Periphery

    Mark Howell wrote last week about Peter Senge’s view that listening to the periphery – those on the edge of the organization – my be the only way leaders can know what is shaping the culture of their workplace.

  • Mark,
    I completely agree on the value of listening to the periphery. My post today (http://kentblumberg.typepad.com/kent_blumberg/2006/10/listening_to_th.html) adds some ideas for how to listen better.

  • Listening to the Periphery

    Mark Howell wrote last week about Peter Senge’s view that listening to the periphery – those on the edge of the organization – my be the only way leaders can know what is shaping the culture of their workplace.