Exercises

First and foremost: figure the fuck out for yourself where the ‘solutions’ are[1]. You need to be able to perform the exercises under stress. So imagine you’re in a room packed with 20 or 30 colleagues. Imagine you’ve been there for the better part of the week, conspiring to transform something unspecified into something else that will remain forever unspecified under the leadership of the international team lead (a.k.a. VP) Geeta.

Imagine as well that she asks you one of the below question with the stern warning that each and every one of you can be asked to answer it in public. After which she pauses[2]. Smiles. Tastes the nervous tension with which all of you think – ‘Not me. Not me! Please, please – not me[3].’ Then she adds: “You get exactly 10 minutes to prepare your answer. At that point I’ll pick names at random from this bowl.” You feel the despair set in: ‘All premeditated.’ you think, knowing she will enjoy every minute of those ten minutes in which she knows you will be increasingly aware of not even having the excuse of being bad at the improvisation of an answer[4].

Here are your potential questions. Watch out they are progressively harder 😉

Ch1-Q1: The ‘Alex writes a memo’-exercise.

Imagine one of the junior employees writes a memo to the CEO expressing concern over a good idea that went unnoticed by his upper management, how to react?

Ch1-Q2: What is competence management?

Just answer the question for God’s sake. Do I need to explain everything twice?

Ch2-Q1: The ‘Boasting and Stressing’-exercise.

Give yourself an elevator pitch on what to do with one’s comfort zones.

Ch2-Q2: The ‘Executive Touch’-exercise.

How to convey a sense of leadership using the approach of method acting?

Ch3-Q1: Avoiding pitfalls and managerial booby traps.

Remind yourself introspectively of the real meaning of change management.

Ch3-Q2: Build a false consensus on there being a false consensus.

Don’t give me that empty look! It’s a real lab question, this one.

Extra[5]: What is the relationship between Hildegarde Von Bingen and Sunn)))O & Earth ft Bill Frisell?

Solutions: mail me your best guesses or wait until The Book is finished.

On to Book 2.

Back to Table of Contents.


[1] From here on: “No more Missus Nice Lady!”

[2] Because maybe she is underpromoted herself, or maybe she has the prerequisites or maybe she has the talent (as many overpromoted people tend to have, from a certain level in the hierarchy), in any case she has the gift of timing (which is as good a gift as you can be given; short of a talent in a popular sport, of course).

[3] To the point where even the staunchest atheist will suddenly realize he is praying, & apologizing for these prayers (hopefully realizing this is one of the least worse bad situations one can be in).

[4] You will, perhaps, be easily distracted in such 10 minutes and be led to wondering whether there is a management learning track in which these skills of annoying the hell out of one’s underlings are perfected. I can confirm to the easily distracted souls that are too curious to leave an overdose of footnotes alone that there is – indeed – such a thing as a curriculum for challenging the status quo, a curriculum that consists of exercises as that described above. But that will, if there’s enough demand for it (up to the point of begging, I mean), remain the subject for a next book.

[5] More questions can be made available on request for a to be negotiated amount of money.

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