Force and Compliance

You may have noticed that I have started to highlight Materialistic Forces.

Depending upon how you are and how you think you might have a differing view of the words Force and Compliance. You may imagine that being forceful is a good thing, you might like others to comply with your will. You might confuse coercion with management. There may be an idea that persuasion into or leveraging into is a good thing. And there may be denial about where manipulation starts, after all if it is for your cause, your plan, it can’t be manipulation, because your cause is “obviously” the right one.

Roll these words Force and Comply around in your mind. Do you like them? Do they make you feel somehow powerful? Or are they anathema to you?

The problem with materialistic forces is that they can seem so justifiable.

To give a mundane example. Once upon a time before RAE and REF everyone who taught at universities was on a contract that enabled them to teach and pursue some research. Along came these exercises whereby the research output was measured, and governmental funding depended upon it. So there had to be some game playing to exclude those not excelling. Some bright spark invented the notion of teaching fellows. The idea being that these were no longer research staff, so could be excluded from the assessment, yet do the “boring” teaching. So many of the less politically able lecturers of old were offered a choice, the sack (redundancy) or migrate onto a teaching fellowship. This may seem justifiable for the greater “good”. These people were then coerced onto these contracts by the use of persuasion, peer pressure and threat of loss of income. This is a use of materialistic force.

Such examples of forceful coercion into compliance can be found pretty much everywhere.

If your mind thinks comply, then forced compliance is almost inevitable. It does not always need the cosh or the bullet. It can be done by pressure, psychological pressure, threat of job loss, brow beating and peer pressure. Pressure is defined as force per unit area, the force of peers on one person creates a lot of pressure. The weight of the crowd is hard to bear by the individual. One can be manoeuvred and manipulated until there is only one choice, comply. Yah and society thinks Scientology is freaky, as usual the pots and kettles have a fair bit in common. To suggest cult-like behaviour is common in all (many) organisations is to talk to a brick wall. But forceful coercion of whatever degree is a part of “management” practice. Fill out your continuous professional development plan and meet your objectives or else!! This kind of stuff breeds petty tyrants. Do you know a few?

The cult of the personality, the sacred cow, is endemic. People like this can throw their weight around and get their will done for fear of emotional and political reprisal. One dare not get on the wrong side of a powerful diva. Those that coerce can be coerced in turn and before long force and compliance are the order of the day. We have the treacherous internecine politics so common in modern organisations. It is normal. Instead of getting things done people watch their backs and play Machiavellian games. Does this sound familiar?

This climate of force and forced compliance is something of a modern reality.

I could go on…

Having cued this up:

Is being forceful a good thing ultimately?

Should others comply with my will?

Is Materialistic Force the best and only way?