Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Stirring the pot

Way back when I had a head of hair and was in a rock band, we had a guy in the group who was always stirring the pot. Problem was, I didn't even know what he was doing (none of us did at first), but he effectively broke up the band.

After practice, he'd call one of us up and tactfully try to pit one of us against one of the other guys. Then he'd call the other guy up and do the same. Bottom-line, for a while it worked for him. He had a band of guys that were fighting with each other, except for him. He was the one guy no one was angry at...until we all found out he was the one stirring up the trouble. He became the pariah and was jettisoned from the band. He then went on to a string of other bands and did the same thing.

At our companies and offices, we all have pot stirring going on: People trying to create a little trouble, trying to take the focus off their poor performance, people that are miserable and want others miserable--there are plenty of pathetic reasons for this to go on.

The blunt answer for me when I confronted the pot stirring way back in my rock-and-roll days was to realize that I can't let someone make me fearful of someone else, I can't become paranoid that the band (or the company) is against me and I have to look coldly at the person stirring the pot and analyze why he or she would be doing such a thing.

Barry LaBov
LaBov & Beyond
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