Submarines are constantly consulting with what’s below them and make decisions based on what the bottom of the ocean is telling them. Subs send sonar signals down to the depths of the sea and pick up the reflections, which helps create a picture of what’s down there.
Unlike the ‘Chinese whispers’ we hear throughout organisations, where either only the good news travels up or the truth becomes distorted by the time it hits the top, sonar signals don’t lie. They’re as accurate as the tip on Ronnie O’Sullivan’s snooker cue. If you know the truth about what’s happening underneath you, you’re privy to not only what’s really going wrong, but also the ideas and knowledge of those below.
Ships, on the other hand, haven’t got a clue what’s happening beneath them. They navigate in accordance with their external environment; lighthouses, buoys, charts, compasses, managers, CEOs, boards, competition, media and the like. Not only does the ship not know what’s happening below, the ship isn’t even interested. Ships go where the Captain says. If you don’t like it, don’t sail because it’s going whether you like it or not.
Ships hit ice bergs. Submarines don’t.
Submarines and ships are the tip of the ice berg
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