Exercising Agency

First, Do No Harm

We shape our own existence, and we define our own experience. While that might not be a popular sentiment, it’s no less real nor true. The biggest challenge is that we are often fundamentally aware of the underlying beliefs that create our experience. If we want to make a difference in the world, we may first need to make a difference in ourselves.



Either You Can Or You Can’t

There is a lot written about getting work done. And a lot more about procrastination. When it comes to results, though, our ability to be successful depends largely on our perception of the situation.



The Will to Lead

Leading change is a challenging undertaking. In particular, we must as individuals find the confidence to lead in the face of indifference, uncertainty and sometimes outright opposition. One of the key influences on our motivation, and on our will to lead, is a curious quality called agency.



Exercising Agency: How Do I Develop Agency?

While we have explored what actually constitutes agency, and illustrated it with examples, a fundamental question is how it emerges. How exactly do individuals develop the ability to exercise agency?



Exercising Agency: What To Do When Politics Gets In The Way

Politics is a challenging concept. We tend to view the term ‘organizational politics’ negatively, often seeing it as competitive, antagonistic, manipulative and dysfunctional. Certainly organizational politics can be all of these things, but it doesn’t have to be.



Agency Illustrated: Breaking Out Of The Box

In a post last week, I explored in depth the question of what constitutes “agency.” I build on that here as a result of a bit of awesome serendipity, courtesy of Apple’s Tim Cook.



Exercising Agency: What To Do When Process Gets In The Way

While most organizations claim to have formal processes for project initiation, in a large number of instances these do not lead to better initiation decisions. The challenge is what to do when faced with ineffective process.



Process, Politics and Agency: Are They Mutually Exclusive?

A question that was raised in the book launch was whether or not these ideas were mutually exclusive. The specific query was, “Don’t most organizations use all three methods? I can see my organization doing all three, each with specific projects and departments.”



Exercising Agency: What Is Agency?

A question that has emerged several times as I have presented information related to my book and the research that supports it is, “What is agency?” Given the title of the book, agency is a pretty fundamental and important concept.



Book Launch: Exercising Agency, A Follow-up

What do you do when you want to have a book launch, and the followers that you have are sprawled seemingly randomly across the globe? Why, turn it into a webinar and do it on the internet!