Any cooperative process will disrupt the status quo in some fashion, and so may disturb or damage the individuals involved.
As a result, cooperation cannot proceed effectively unless each participant feels sufficiently secure.
Security depends on intrinsic strength and actual control in the particular situation, i.e. on choices flowing from power-centred principles. Constraints on flow from the vulnerabilities of participants and the balance of power.
Power-centred Principles from a purely personal perspective.
Does L2-Control imply a Participant focus or a Shared-Endeavour focus or both?
The Shared Endeavour was entered upon in part to increase the strength and control of each Participant, and so requires continues attention as the project unfolds. At the same time each Participant must focus attention on their own situation (i.e. outside that endeavour and its group), while they are contributing to it. If a Participant's control of events weakens for any reason, then they will not be able to cooperate as well, or possibly at all.
That means L2 is a Balanced Centre.
At L2, the participant v shared-endeavour duality involves both poles simultaneously, so this is a Balanced Centre with the formula: L2B.
There is a direct link and virtuous cycle between these first two Levels.
Each builds on the other and together they provide for Stability (L2 ↔ L1). i.e. the more an individual works hard and prospers (L1), the greater his strength and potential for control in the shared endeavour (L2). At the same time, the greater his control and strength in the joint project (L2), the more likely is prospering through hard work (L1).
Stability is a prerequisite for managed change, growth and achievement, and therefore enables cooperation. Instability, whether due to financial problems, alterations in top management or employee disruption, makes it difficult or impossible for an organization to think of anything outside itself.
The same applies to a person: emotional instability or transient enthusiasms interfere with the persistence and perseverance required for joint efforts.
Stability may be a pre-requisite, but it is also antithetical to cooperation, because of the implied change. Power-based principles and choices give no guidance about what goals are desirable for the group or in the context. The result is then inertia.
Direction can only be provided by special interests in the situation, who are prepared to crusade and put pressure on individual organizations to overcome the inertia of comfortable stability.
So move to Level-3: Reinforcing competence.
Originally posted: July 2009