Working Wounded Blog: Cindy Sheehan's Lessons for the Workplace

If there is one thing that is more American than apple pie, it's dissent. So go ahead, Mr. President, and show us that you can hear someone who disagrees with you. Well beyond Cindy Sheehan, that small act has the potential to teach business a lesson that is essential to its very survival.

Quote of the week:
"The employer generally gets the employee he deserves." -- Sir Walter Gilbey

Weekly book excerpt:
From "Funky Business" by Ridderstrale and Nordstrom (FT, 2000)

"Learning does not happen automatically, it must be managed. And the speed of a company will not be determined not by the fastest and smartest people, but by the slowest and least skilled. Enabling learning is one of the key tasks for any leader. Leaders must ensure the continuous transfer of knowledge across organizational boundaries. The individual parts must be able to reflect the whole. In effect, Funky Inc. must work in a similar way to the human brain."

Working Wounded Mailbag:

"I once had a job steam cleaning Dumpsters. It was even worse than you imagine. I had to climb inside of these dirty Dumpsters with nothing but me and my steam gun. This was before the days of protective clothing. As an aside, many of your readers have no doubt seen corner reflectors hung on sailboats, designed to reflect radar energy back to the source so that the boat will be easily seen. It turns out that directing steam into the interior corners of a Dumpster works pretty much the same way. Everything that was once stuck in the corner of the Dumpster gets blasted out and comes directly back -- to you -- covering you from head to toe in an instant. A sort of putrid tsunami. In the long run, the experience has been a benefit. Whenever I have a challenging day in the office, I just think back to that job, and things no longer look so grim."

Blog Ballot Results

Here are the results from a recent Working Wounded Blog/ABCNEWS.com online ballot:
What is your main source for information about how to survive the workplace?

       The Apprentice, 4.8 percent
       Corporate training programs, 7.3 percent
       Reading business publications, 21.9 percent
       My intuition, 65.8 percent

Bob Rosner is a best-selling author, an internationally syndicated columnist, popular speaker and a recent addition to the community of bloggers. He welcomes your comments at bob@workingwounded.com.

This work is the opinion of the columnist and in no way reflects the opinion of ABC News.

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