Book review: The Blind Men and the Elephant
This excellent book by David Schmaltz challenges the reader to examine the fundamental views they have of themselves and their work. It asks: What do you want? What is your purpose? Can you find 'your project' within each project you undertake? If you cannot enagage and participate meaningfully on a project, then can you - should you - participate at all?
Some sample quotes:
- "A healthy human system... reveres variety over similarity, choice over command"
- "We need more than horseflesh on our projects today - we need the active questioning judgement of every [individual]"
- "There are always 101 good reasons why I can't plan my project yet... No one wins this contest by generating 102 good reasons to plan. They win by generating one small reasonably good reason to plan anyway and then just getting started"
- "Don't allow yourself to be a Village Idiot, dependent on others to tell you the meaning of your own experience"
'Blind Men' is short, well written, inspirational and thought-provoking, and I can't recommend it highly enough. It lays bare the lack of humanity in a typical project environment, and considers what would happen if the Master-Slave relationships that bind us were stripped away to allow true group coherence to emerge. Read it!