Deep Exploration: When Business and Psychological Dynamics Converge

Deep C addresses the hidden dynamics that shape leadership behaviour and organisational effectiveness and which impact on business success.

Imagine your organisation as an iceberg; it’s important to look beyond observable behaviour and to be aware of the hidden dynamics that lie deeper beneath the surface.

The following client examples illustrate these below-the-surface dynamics at work:

Preventing Derailment of a Valued Senior Executive

Despite recent feedback from the CEO, an otherwise much-valued senior leader was largely unaware of her unhelpful and potentially career-limiting pattern of behaviour.

Supporting a Top Team In Their Quest for Collaboration

Members of a top team were engaging in subtle forms of relationship sabotage with each other. The same behaviour began to play out elsewhere in the organisation; a dynamic that served as an unseen barrier to enterprise-wide collaboration.

Overcoming a Leadership Block To Culture Change

Key change leaders in one subsidiary of a global manufacturer were found to be unwittingly engaging in defensive behaviour, subtly designed to protect the status quo. This was having a significant drag effect on a much-needed shift in company culture.

In all three examples, Deep C worked at depth to surface the hidden dynamics which were blocking performance and desired business outcomes for the client. For the most part, these dynamics lay hidden, beyond leaders’ conscious awareness.

On each occasion, we helped the clients to press ‘pause’ and understand the issues, identifying what needed to be different. We then used the insights gained as a positive force for facilitating change and development.

Why This ‘Deep’ Approach?

Our practice is built on an important belief about people, organisations and how they change. In most organisations, we find that a ‘myth of rationality’ prevails. Behaviour is viewed as an objective truth, one that is measurable, dependable and predictive.

While a business relies on its people to deliver results, what drives employees is rarely rational and objective. People are complex; they bring a host of seemingly irrational quirks and idiosyncrasies to work, such as defensive behaviours, blind spots, unconscious motives, hidden anxieties and fears. Such emotional phenomena shade the way people deal with the world and govern the choices they make – and leaders are no exception.

In our work with executives and their teams, we recognise that such irrationality is often overlooked in the interest of expediency – but ignored at cost. Rather than view it as a negative, we see it as a deeper source of energy, capable of unlocking powerful motivational forces that can deliver higher performance – and better results.

The Benefit of ‘Going Down Deeper, Staying Down Longer and Coming Up Dirtier’

Working at depth has three distinct advantages for our clients in terms of creating leadership advantage.

Firstly, working at depth enhances diagnostic rigour. Rather than simply treating surface ‘symptoms’, Deep C gets to the heart of a client’s leadership issues.

Secondly, solution design is more robust, compared to ‘sticking plaster’ approaches. Unconscious emotional blockages to change and development become an integral part of a more powerful solution.

Finally, sustainability of any change is more likely when working at depth. The client is investing emotional energy to gain insights about their behaviour and how things need to change. Change is thus facilitated more from ‘within’ – and owned by the client.