Driving home, Peter kept on asking himself this question: What the h— went wrong?
What a disaster! This was an important day. He had put together a cross-functional team of experts—supposedly some of the most competent people in the company. He had taken great pain—and expense—in organizing the best possible location offsite. There, he had given them a clear brief, explaining exactly what needed to be done and what he expected from them. The deadline was 4:00 P.M.—tight but doable.
—was a monumental f— up, to put it mildly.
What was wrong with these people?
There was nothing wrong with these people. What was wrong was that Peter was not managing their states in a skillful way. He might have ignored or was unaware of the basic mechanics of human interaction.
Once you understand that this instability of organic systems is...