b-school, Barcelona, Blogging, Henley, HRM, MBA, Personal, Thoughts

Mental ramblings at the end of Summer

There’s one date that I always long to: the end of summer. Leaving behind that excessive warmth and and welcoming a cooler weather. The beach is empty again, no more noisy crowds. Yet it’s still warm enough to sit between the trees and wander around so many thoughts that I’ve been gathering lately. Quiet enough to think, to reflect, to digest, or to simply relax, procrastinate or do nothing.

Barcelona’s beach in Autumn

This time it was a three-day weekend, long enough to escape from the big city to what once was a small village before the arrival of hordes of tourists. Around this time of the year, the fishermen used to await the “bootcleaner”, a big storm that signalled the end of the warmest days. Autumn was finally coming. They laid their nets and boats close to the beach so they would be rained clean. Then they inspected everything, made due reparations and got everything ready for the forthcoming year.

This year there has been more than one storm, but the weather is still fairly good. A nice September. Actually, the perfect moment to have a bath in the sea, is when you least expect it. After a cloudy day, then the sun suddenly shines, the air is perfectly clean and the waters are crystal clear again, a bit cooler I might say. And it’s all for you, your family, your friends.

With the distance that a fresh bath can provide, but still being in your MBA mind frame, you can see and feel how we have diverted from the way that people should be treated, respected or enabled. Close to nature and far from stress, it’s easy to envision the good nature in people, McGregor’s Theory Y that Rousseau would surely have endorsed, the Harvard approach to HRM, and forget for a while Hobbes view, name it Theory X, Taylorism or the Michigan approach to HR.

If we don’t believe in the inherently good human nature, how are we going to trust anyone? and then, who are we going to rely on? Will we have to do everything ourselves? how it will be possible to delegate? to enable? to empower? We won’t be able to grow.

If we believe that all humans just seek the greater economic gain, shouldn’t we stop using the collaborative words and concepts? We’d have to keep our information private and secret, stop writing learning journals or blogs, stop thinking aloud… always scared to become or be seen like sheep, we’d end up being wolves.

The end of summer is a good moment to reflect, to start anew, to free yourself from long held assumptions and misconceptions. To believe. For sometimes it’s necessary to forget in order to be able to learn.


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