Adonis Diaries

Posts Tagged ‘risk taking

Have you ever dislodged a Manipulator ahead of time? We all have been suckers many times in our life.

Don’t get played.

By Dan Rockwell?

Cowards, manipulators, and backstabbers encourage you to take risks so they don’t have to.

They posture in shadows. Let others get dirty. They step into the light when it’s safe.

Leading requires risk-taking.

Don’t lead if you can’t take responsibility. Backstabbers and players, on the other hand, manipulate leaders. They want benefit while others take risks.

Players and manipulators always drive toward self-interest, secretly. Even when making others look bad, its to strengthen their own position.

Exposing manipulative players:

Ask ten questions to see if you’re being played.

  1. Are you being asked to keep secrets?
  2. Is someone creating paranoia and weakening relationships?
  3. Has someone whispered negative information about another in your ear?
  4. Who’s in the loop? Who’s left out?
  5. Whose life gets easier? Whose gets harder?
  6. Why is it important for you to take the lead, rather than someone else?
  7. Who looks good if it works?
  8. Who takes the fall if it fails?
  9. How is the team impacted?
  10. Are you functioning within organizational values?

Bonus: Who’s doing the work? Manipulators maneuver others into doing most of the work.

Defeating manipulative players:

All organizations have players and backstabbers who place self-interest ahead of all other interests. They thrive in silence and secrecy.

Silence implies permission.

Secrets strengthen manipulators.

Openness and transparency defeat manipulative players.

Don’t attack them. Don’t play their games. Open the shades. Turn on the lights. Watch them fall in line or scurry like cockroaches.

Performance wins when everything’s on the table.

Transparency defeats manipulators.

When you smell the stench of manipulation, invite all stakeholders to a meeting that spells out all deliverables, responsibilities, deadlines, and communication channels.

Don’t waste time attacking manipulators. It’s a distraction. Create high performance cultures with transparency.

How can leaders lessen the power of manipulators?

FRAUD DETECTOR:  SKIN IN THE GAME

John Peter shared this link of Nassim Nicholas Taleb
July 22 , 2015

SKIN IN THE GAME and OUR FRAUD DETECTOR
+ Have you ever wondered why people are upset by CEO compensation, sometimes >200x that of the average employee, but not if an entrepreneur makes the same amount of money; nor are they upset with singers, authors, or performers?
+ The economist Thomas Sowell found this an aberration.

His argument is that a CEO is not harming you; he is not sponsored by the taxpayer (or let us grant him that for this argument). But Sowell and the others apologists of CEO pay are missing the fact that our naturalistic fraud detector may be picking up something quite severe.

A CEO has inverse skin in the game; his losses are transferred to the shareholder (as he keeps the upside with stock options and stick others with the downside).

As I said in Antifragile, he is no entrepreneur (or artist where thousands are sacrificing their lives, so entering the profession cannot be done rationally on economic grounds).


+ We also detect that a CEO is largely an actor. Just look at one on TV for a split second.
+ So our ecological instinct is effective there in smelling something unfair; it is more powerful than that of regular economists who need a more sophisticated understanding of contract theory/asymmetry to get the point.


+ Note that in some countries where wealth has a bad name, it is often because it is associated with rent seeking. In the US, perception is different because wealth is traditionally associated with risk taking. (From your own pocket?)
+ Correct me if I am wrong, but it seems that societies give respect to people who have skin in the game (but not exclusively), and have a moral repulsion towards those who have inverse skin in the game.


adonis49

adonis49

adonis49

October 2020
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