"Freedom is a double-edged sword"
One of the challenges we face at Causeway has primarily to do with the fact that our employees are endowed with the power to do and act as they deem necessary at any given work situation. However, as appealing as this sound not everybody is always prepared to take on the responsibilities when things go south due to certain actions. This ‘’freestyle’’ management sometimes leads to self-created hierarchies and ego battles. So why are humans even in the freest of environments drawn to order?
For example, think about meetings you’d attend, you will usually find the most senior people and the people who have the most experienced in the given company sit at the head of the table, and most of the time they arrive on the meeting at the exact same time as everyone else. So if they are not racing around the offices trying to grab that head seat, why are they still on it? Take a look around next time when you attend a meeting, and notice how while attendees file in, they always leave the head seat empty. This simple example is an illustration of how humans are prone to relief themselves from the ‘’head’’ responsibility and pin it on someone else, thus creating a hierarchy with no instructions or even conscious thought.
It is fair to think that the people who you have unconsciously chosen to sit at that head table, such as your managers, according to you have a heavier ‘’crown’’ to carry on their head and according to you are better off handling the responsibilities bestowed on the company.
But by far what has surprised us the most was that even at a company such as Causeway Connect where we deem our employees as self-sufficient, self-managed and disciplined, was the change of behaviour when a simple set of basic rules was introduced and the realization of a hierarchy that the employees themselves have created.
So how do we cope, and when do we press the Panic Button?
The truth is we have learned, that many of us play both the role of a manager and an employee at the same time, and many of us have experienced how heavy is the head that wears the crown. But ultimately we chose to believe that people are fundamentally good and that we need to trust our hiring process. If you as a manager or as an employee fundamentally share the same values as your organization you can expect that eventually the ego display and hierarchy will turn out to be figments of your imagination and all your goals are shared and common, as they lead to one target: your personal growth which will be allowed by the growth and expansion of the company that lets you thrive.