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Use and Misuse in «Leading Projects»

Make a Project Succeed to Produce Achievement: Framework of all PH-L2s


All the emergent frameworks are dynamic states of creative effort. It is conjectured that they are activated naturally in extremis, when the options of exiting or enduring are rejected. This personal choice is an expression of autonomy and transcendence.

However, these socio-mental options have been observed by others with a strong interest in specific goals. That interest more commonly serves money or power rather than the good of each and all. But not necessarily. Applying a framework in this way is always an imposition on another.

Judgement as to whether this constitutes a use or a misuse of human creative potential will vary. If the user is depersonalized or driven by some inner demon, use may tip into abuse. In the case below, there appears to be a continuum in use, but more inquiry is required.

Note: Each framework is examined from this perspective and the findings are compared and reviewed here.

Ambition-driven Leaders

Certainty is king in complex projects where outcomes are inherently uncertain. A framework that makes a project succeed naturally attracts ambitious capable individuals who want to generate success, especially commercial success.

All leaders of large organizations are ambitious. And many have no wish to wait for breakdown or failure before activating this framework. However, there is more to success than ambition, and such leaders fall along a spectrum between two extreme types.

Dynamic leaders strive to be masters of their domain, have a sure sense of direction, know their field and understand the people, possess an intensity and energy, and are realistic and pragmatic in taking action.

Power-driven leaders are less capable. Being dominated by power, they are liable to act impulsively, take inordinate risks, desire glorification, and manipulate others in exploitative ways. Such leaders distrust rationality and do not always have a strong grasp of reality. They value confidence rather than certainty and, being self-preoccupied, they are determined to succeed regardless.

ClosedWhat about Visionary Leaders?

Using the PH-L2 Framework

KL7: Respect Signals. Dynamic leaders show a readiness to perceive and act on signals that others are liable to debate and ignore in practice e.g. about the state of the industry, about new technologies, about social changes. Power-driven leaders are in danger of misinterpreting signals to justify their decisions.

KL6: Enable Forms. Dynamic leaders impose alterations on themselves and live their values. They also make demands on associates and others and remake the environment of the project. Power-driven leaders may protect themselves while making associates ill through pressure. Dishonest methods may be introduced and accounting may be manipulated.

KL5: Clarify Concepts. Both varieties of ambition-driven leader are powerful communicators of their ideas for the organization. Dynamic leaders are better listeners to the concepts suggested by others because their arrogance is less.

KL4: Feel Good BelievingAmbition-driven leaders believe in themselves, their ideas and their vision. They commit to values relevant to the organization; and show a refusal to conform, be conventional or defer to usual authorities. Dynamic leaders review beliefs, power-driven leaders may resist that.

KL3: Promote Strategic Objectives. Ambitious leaders typically look after themselves well, either financially or in terms of prestige or both. Both types of leader give prominence to marketing and support outcomes claimed to benefit vast numbers: a whole class, society, even humanity.

KL2: Rely on Images. Ambitious leaders recognize the necessity of developing a vision for the organization. This vision is not a strategic plan or detailed scenario. It is rather a few evocative images that are easily communicated, unequivocal and felt as inspiring by others.

KL1: Activate Procedures. Ambitious leaders formulate and instigate the steps that need to be followed without fail to generate success. These are sequential, pragmatic, and therefore achievable by those involved.

Experience of Being Forced

Some people work best when their backs are up against the wall. So they imagine that this is the case, or perhaps create such situations.

If the right emotional charge exists within a group, an ambitious leader can inspire people to identify with the vision. Given proper support, the result can be excellent. However, in the absence of relevant knowledge, effective management and sensible pragmatic choices, the result can be disastrous.

No amount of self-confidence can mitigate the inevitable risks that accompany all projects. A powerful leader with a powerful vision can be especially dangerous and even self-defeating. Given failure, opposition from others, bad luck or loss of resources, the leader is removed or resigns. Perhaps there will be a new leader who can apply the framework.

Last Updated: 24-Mar-2014. Last amended: 22-Jan-2015.

All material here is in a draft form. There will be errors and omissions. Nothing should be copied or distributed without express permission. Thank you.Copyright © Warren Kinston 2009-2018. All Rights Reserved.

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