Let the Madness in...!

by Administrator 25.Sep.2015 10:42:00

"A man needs a little madness, or else... he never dares cut the rope and be free." ― Nikos Kazantzakis

Every day most of us file silently up/down escalators, out of elevators, and into our corporate cubicle or work station. The ever softer tippa tappa of keyboards, muted/appropriate conversations (more often than not conducted with ear/head-sets), and phones on vibrate etc., leave any jarring sound or event totally exposed!

Add to the mix the reams of workplace etiquette and must not lists… the organizational dos/don'ts, so broadly defined, that if anyone finds any given behavior offensive then it is…!

Normal human stuff, that elsewhere might raise a laugh, like dropping the odd F-bomb, subjects such as flatulence/bowel movements, or even relating mildly off-color jokes etc., will ensure the attention of HR, inevitable warnings and probable cause for dismissal!

It has gotten so bad in some circles that direct talk is seen as aggression and confrontation is confused with conflict. People tend to pounce on the most flippant of remarks with such self-righteous alacrity that we do our best to consider each word before we say it.

Safe to say then that such an environment does not lend itself to random foolishness, idiocy or, God forbid, loud laughter!

  • Have we stemmed our innate humor, our appreciation of sarcasm/irony...?
  • Has our attractive youthful exuberance and playful banter been hidden behind layers of de riguer wallpaper?
  • Have we confused deserved respect for others with shallow compliance with sterile rules?

During tedious formal dinners as a young diplomat in Paris, so often stuck for hours at the flowers (juniors always were seated at the center of the table) between two equally reluctant attendees, I learned that giving people permission to be themselves really works.

My trick was to put people at ease by giving people a glimpse of the madness… my silly, foolish, and often idiotic side. In so doing I accessed theirs! Laughter, irreverently inspired or not, is infectious … The seniors often caught the vibe and even the most protocol driven events degenerated from pretentious stiffness, into lively, enjoyable and memorable occasions.

I have tried to never lose sight of the fact that madness (I guess I have to add in moderation) is an integral part of the human psyche… This has served me well over the decades. I ask myself regularly, if I can really be sane if not in touch with my own lunacy? Freedom to be imperfect, spontaneous, exuberant and funny is for me the greatest catalyst in building lasting business relationships.

The impactful closing scene from the movie Zorba the Greek will perhaps illustrate my point - - and will be worth the 6 minute time investment ?


Recent Posts

  • {#advanced_dlg.about_title}
  • {#advanced_dlg.about_title}
  • {#advanced_dlg.about_title}

Youth Mentorship

Harding on Body Language

Random Posts

QR Code

Harding International and Associates Inc QR Code