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The Tao At Work
by Stan Herman

While in the midst of coping
with difficulty, complexity and pressure,
it’s useful to pause from time to time
and remind yourself of the obvious.
These passages are about the obvious.


Once upon a time
the simple could be seen...

That all reality is virtual,

That chaos encompasses order,
and order chaos.

That clarity and peace
interweave elegantly
with difficulty and battle,

and that spirit is the sinew
that binds all the world together.

From these conditions
arise the billion others
with which we live.

Failing to recall that this is so,
you miss the world's significance,
the direction of its change,
its uses and its destination.

And so you may feel lost
and frightened.

Through her deeds,
a great leader reminds people
of their possibilities.

Her greatness rises not
upon the tower
of spectacular achievement,
but from the foundation
of the ordinary.

She stands not above
but among those she leads,
upon the same earthy foundation,
and beneath her lies the solid rock.

All leaders announce themselves
as servants of those they lead.

For some these protestations
only mask their pride.

The great leader recognizes
leadership is a duty
no more important
than any other.


Stanley Herman is a management consultant and author of
A Force Of Ones: Reclaiming Individual Power in a Time of Teams, Work Groups and Other Crowds and The Tao At Work: On Leading and Following (Jossey-Bass), from which the above passage is an excerpt. Contact Stan by e-mail at [email protected] or fax 760-480-1628.

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