Taking Up Your Role: Contents

Foreword to the English Edition

Chapter 1.   Contexts and roles in our daily lives
Person and situation  
The concept of roles
Habitual roles  
Professions in transition  
Taking up a functional role  
Context – goal – role  

Chapter 2.   Separating the role from the person
When the person merges with the job   
When boundaries get blurred   
The value of mental boundaries  
The permeability of boundaries   
What’s involved in a professional role?   
The consequences of unclear roles   

Chapter 3.   Moving stones versus building a cathedral  
Setting visible and understandable goals   
Defining a clear task   
A sense of coherence   

Chapter 4. Living human systems   
Basic principles of systems thinking   
Clear boundaries    
Permeability—peepholes to the outside   
Common goals   
The organization—a Russian doll   

Chapter 5. The importance of having a functioning filter   
External reminders   
Internal work   
Picturing the filter   
Requirements for a functioning filter   
Personal responsibility   
When you slip out of your role  

Chapter 6. What’s the point of having a boss?   

Leadership and the manager’s role   
The manager as boundary straddler   
Functional hierarchy   
The manager’s role in the hierarchy   
Considerations for the employee   
The employee/manager relationship   

Chapter 7. Meetings, meetings, and more meetings   
Why we need meetings   
Saying the right thing in the wrong context   
Communication and plumbing   
Meetings: function-structure-person   
Small action—great effect   

Chapter 8. Looking through the lens of group development   
An integrated model of group development    
Stage 1: Security and belonging   
Stage 2: Opposition and conflict   
Stage 3: Trust and structure   
Stage 4: Work and productivity   
Not always a linear progression   
The employee’s role as a group member   
A fly on the wall   

Chapter 9. Thought as a tool   
Past, present, and future   
Facts and interpretations  
Here and now   
A model for understanding our thought patterns   
Interpretations of the past: War stories and nostalgia   
Interpretations of the future: Fears and fantasies    
Interpretations of the present: Mind-reading   
Learning from the past    
Planning for the future    
Being present   
Applying the model to your workplace   

Chapter 10. Hanging in for the long haul   
Contextual factors that help us take up our role   
What can we do ourselves?   
Don’t reinvent the wheel