Systems of the 21st Century

For many organizations, the 21st century has proven to be pretty much the same as the 20th century.

People still get hired and fired in much the same ways that they did 20 years ago.

Organizations and businesses still do the core processes of their businesses—sales, finance, marketing, accounting—in the same way that they did—with some minor cosmetic changes—30 years ago.

And, unfortunately, organizations and businesses still handle conflict in the same way that they did 30 years ago. They still view conflict as a process rather than as a product.

They still view the resolution of conflicts—however they are resolved—as “the way we do things around here.” This is reflected in either the avoidance of the process, the accommodation of the tradition of the process, or the attacking of outside interveners with new ideas as “not understanding how we do things here.”

Many organizations still pay outside consultants or have internal offices and departments, designed to “handle” conflicts in the ways that the organization sees as comfortable and preserving the status quo.

In order to do the brave work of the 21st century, peacemakers must become more and more involved in developing bleeding edge systems for organizations, because the changes to systems that on the surface appear cosmetic, will have deep ramifications for the future.

-Peace Be With You All-

Jesan Sorrells, MA
Principal Conflict Engagement Consultant
Human Services Consulting and Training (HSCT)
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