The Problem with Top-Down

Going horizontal in a vertical world
by David Zinger

Our organizational problems
stem from being so vertical in a horizontal world.
Elevators of rank, privilege, and delusion
traverse up and down the corporate hierarchy
giving the illusion of height over width.
Even our page views are portrait, not landscape.
We need to move horizontally
to be in touch with each other.
Can we dwell on the level
rather than taking it the next level?
Whatever deluded us to think our title, role, or function put us above
or below anyone else?
I love the limitless stretch of expansive prairie
as we see forever in all directions
never hearing, “look out below.”

– From David Zinger’s book of poems on workplace engagement, Assorted Zingersillustrated by cartoonist John Junson.
Assorted Zingers

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