The Adizes blog, which is updated at least once a week on the Adizes Institute website and sent by e-mail to thousands of subscribers, began life in 2003 as a monthly column called “Insights.”
They were, literally, insights, rather than the products of scientific research. I dared to say what I thought. In doing so, I opened myself up to criticism. And that is what I got: Many people wrote to say they disagreed with one or more of my observations or conclusions. But they kept reading, because what I wrote made them think. Which is exactly what I had set out to achieve.
Recently, I decided to publish the essays in book form. I cherish books; I suppose in that way I will always belong to the pre-Internet generation. The Internet, blogs, and tweets are great for speed and mass distribution, but to me they seem temporary, perishable, while a book has permanency.
In this book—the third in a series of Insights collections—all of the essays deal with personal growth, which I have come to believe is closely related to professional development. The ideas for these columns often evolved out of something I saw or heard or felt as I met with people around the world, observing how often their family problems echoed the organizational problems I was there to repair.
I am neither a family therapist nor a psychiatrist. Nevertheless, it has not escaped me that my theories of management and change can also be productive when applied to personal and family life. Whether the subject is meditation, divorce, or addiction (to food, to technology, or to work itself), what happens in the private realm often affects the professional realm, and vice versa. I decided to write down the insights that occurred to me about personal life.
Once these essays were published on my website (http://www.adizes.com/blog/, in light of the response from my readers, I often rethought the essays, re-edited or rewrote them, and also updated the ones that needed it. So here, in that somewhat changed form, are my thoughts as they evolved at the beginning of the 21st century, as I witnessed changes—and their unintended consequences—occurring in families all over the world. In particular, these Insights offer a fascinating close-up of how people in developed countries, as well as countries in transition, are dealing with the phenomenon of globalization in their personal and family lives.