Anglican Samizdat

March 25, 2009

The status quo is not an option

Filed under: Diocese of Niagara — David Jenkins @ 7:45 pm

I have worked for large companies for over 40 years and during that time I have had the pleasure of listening to every cliché ever devised by the fevered imaginations of overpaid motivational consultants. I have participated in vacuous group discussions – run by oily management facilitators – to come up with Mission Statements; I have listened to seminars exhorting me to Pursue Excellence and have been indoctrinated on the techniques of inspiring commitment in others by pop-psychology spouting spalpeens wearing an excess of smelly underarm deodorant.

In the long and dismal succession of attempts to elevate my enthusiasm for making my employer more profitable, the only one that captured 30 seconds of my interest was a seminar by Tom Peters – the Pursuit of Excellence merchant. One of the directors in the company I worked for at the time was booked on a Peters’ seminar and couldn’t go; in desperation, he decided to inflict the unique learning experience on someone else – me. As expected, Tom Peters spent 4 hours expounding the obvious: for a company to do well, the people in charge have to like what they do. After a couple of hours of this, my self-induced somnambulant state was interrupted by the only interesting question I heard that day: if the solution to a successful company is so simple, why do companies not act on Peters’ advice – employ people who are interested in the work? The answer: the question was too hard. That was the only part I enjoyed.

So when I read things like this: The Status Quo is not an Option, Excellence in Ministry, Prophetic Justice Making, Cultures of Innovation, Effective Leadership, Life Changing Worshiping Experiences, Effective Resource Management, I know exactly what is going on.

We are hearing the death rattle of an organisation that no longer has any idea of what its purpose is, why it exists or what to do to extend its miserably short and squalid life. The organisation is the Diocese of Niagara.



  1. Parkinson’s Law is at work here. We are down to fourth and fifth rates running the company and I see no hope of a first rate sneaking through to the top what with the scorched earth policy that is in place to keep anything like that from happening. So sad.

    Comment by gawk — March 26, 2009 @ 4:53 am

  2. The pastoral letter leading up to the synod was no great shakes either: +Bird puts environmentalism at heart of faith, endorses theologian who believes Earth is alive

    Comment by Toral — March 26, 2009 @ 8:57 am

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