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Leadership and the New Science, 3rd Edition by Margaret J. Wheatley

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Chapter TenThe Real World

People often comment that the new leadership I propose couldn’t possibly work in “the real world.” I assume they are referring to their organization or government, a mechanistic world managed by bureaucracy, governed by policies and laws, filled with people who do what they’re told, who surrender their freedom to leaders and sit passively waiting for instructions. This “real world” craves efficiency and obedience. It relies on standard operating procedures for every situation, even when chaos erupts and things spin out of control.

This is not the real world. This world is a manmade, dangerous fiction that destroys our capacity to deal well with what’s really going on. The real world, not this fake one, demands that we ...

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