alacrity in action

It was a lovely and clear morning on Friday even though the peering autumn has already added a palpable chill. It would have been a very refreshing cycle ride to the office had I not read your lightning-fast fiery response Cátia’s, in our pair-dialogue, on the train before. How energising! Wow! I must have broken my personal speed record 🙂

What a relief I felt to see your awesome analysis and a poignant response, what command of words:

“Fancy Bullshit does not mark your mind, nor scratches your intellect.”

I rest my case, will just let you in on a secret… please don’t tell anyone: that young fellow you so aptly refer to was in fact a team of top company executives. Woops.

You mentioned trust, I love trusts, it’s a great value, and Yves added some more insights so standby for another post…

In the meantime Cátia, you have asked me a million dollar question – How should a company create their values? What a nice challenge. If I knew, I guess I would be out there now selling my recipe for success. Thought, to stay true to my values, I would probably be giving it away.

Our great blog-pair-discussion-writing have made me realise something though. Eureka! The way to create company values is not to write them down, no! That we know, is doomed to fail. Let the young fellow abandon his futile attempts, tear the posters down, burn the leaflets, delete emails and shut the arrogant executive who thinks they can preach the wholly righteous values. They are not worthy of their role. The only possible way to create sustainable, true and honest set of company values is simply to make them the focal point of a creative dialogue! That’s the answer, yes. Discuss the values. Make them subject to thorough examination, explore assumptions, dig through all implications, understand the repercussions. And if you think, Mr. Smart, that your company have done it during your annual executive convention… well then go and discuss your company values with everyone and every day now.

Seems impractical? Perhaps; Still I’m convinced this is the only way to make them real, alive and growing.

I tell you more; it’s pretty damn hard too. Try asking your neighbour why she goes to church every Sunday while you prefer a tour of golf. Check with your colleague why he keeps voting conservative while it’s clearly the liberals who should lead. See why your mum keeps buying lottery tickets if the odds are much higher that she dies unexpectedly than wins. And do that in calm, respectful way so that each of you can truly learn something…

Sounds like an obvious conclusion now, the true way to keep my marriage in good shape and make it grow is to spend those long, long hours talking, talking and talking… and discussing the undiscussable. Voilá.

PS. If you’d like to know where to start you might want to read this book.


  1. Diana Larsen (from Agile retrospective fame) is writing a new book called LiftOff.
    Check with Diana to get a Beta version of the book.
    I have read 92% and it’s a great one. Will probably have more impact then AR

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