What is wisdom based management?

Wisdom based management. The world seems to be in chaos and confusion but only for those who didn´t find wisdom. After training and coaching of hundreds of executives, examining many cultures and mentalities all over the globe in more than 15 years I stumbled about an interesting behavior among modern management stereotypes, a common urge: The urge to gain more and more knowledge. This quest for more knowledge became a trap over time.

Today we live in a world where knowledge is not the problem, but wisdom. We have all the knowledge available at our fingertips in front of our computers every moment every second. Big Data is everywhere. Ray Kurzweil for example a futurist who works with google believes the brain could be enhanced by implants that connect to cloud-based networks to give us ‚God-like‘ abilities. This is the path of knowledge not wisdom, knowledge is part of the problem, not the solution. He also says:

We are going to be able to expand the neocortex and so we are going to become more God-like

Ray Kurzweil

This is a technology driven quest for more knowledge lacking wisdom. Out of this perspective mankind looks like an imperfect species, which needs implants to be perfect. This view has it´s cause in a deep believe system, which was indeed implanted into the human consciousness. It was a simple belief: „The way I am I am not right.“

For me it was very interesting to discover that this root believe was the underlying source of all problems and uncertainties my customers had to confront to let go of fear, anxiety and uncertainty. This believe was virus like all over the workplace and had infected customers, employees, management … everyone. More and more knowledge was not the solution on the contrary the more they gained knowledge the more they realized what they don´t know and again this let to fear and anxiety. What they had to discover was to let go the idea of control. This was a very challenging step, this was revolutionary and totally new at the same time. All management tools are based on the idea of control. They operate into a closed mindset within certain rules and regulations. These management systems control and manage human behavior. These systems tell you what is accepted and what not. They function like an internalized police system.


Leadership and wisdom

And now we face the core issue: wisdom you cannot control!

This leads me to the first lesson management has to learn: To deal with uncertainty. To feel comfortable of not knowing. This is the path of the warrior not knowing what he has to conquer in the battle. Not knowing what the numbers are tomorrow, not knowing what reorganization we will face tomorrow again. This ignorance became the resource of wisdom. Not knowing opens up the paradox path of wisdom. You have to accept all your limitations and shadows, to accept that there is a wisdom out there that is greater than you, that is greater than knowledge that ever can be processed by computers and artificial intelligence.

This is the death the shaman faces on his path of inspiration into the unknown. He has to overcome his own believe systems his programming’s to find new ways into the greater of existence. This is wisdom.

Wisdom is the absence of questions. Wisdom is knowing. Knowing what to do, when and where! There is no doubt, no hesitation, pure action.

Evolution Management beyond knowledge – For further reading Teal Organizations the paradigm shift

Wisdom Based Management