How to Balance Power and Love

I attended a fabulous workshop at the ALIA European gathering in Menorode last week.
The workshop is based Adam Kahane’s work and well described in his latest book Power and Love: A Theory and Practice of Social Change. I can highly recommend the book.

The big eye openers for me where:
1) It is not an either or but a both and – it is a polarity, and needs to be managed constructively
2) If you are excellent at one or the either don’t turn down the volume on what you are good at – start working on the part that needs improving
3) The task of a manager is a continuous process of balancing power and love

There is a great interview with Adam Kahane in S+B you can read it here

”Power properly understood is nothing but the ability to achieve purpose. It is the strength required to bring about social, political and economical change…

And one of the great problems of history is that the concepts of love and power have usually been contrasted as opposites – polar opposites – so that love is identified with the resignations of power and power with the the denial of love.

Now we have to get this thing right.

What we need to realize is that power with out love is reckless and abusive and love with out power is sentimental and anemic. It is precisely this collision of immoral power with powerless morality which constitutes the major crisis of our time.”

Martin Luther king Jr.