Reflections on a book by Hannu Tuovinen

To understand and live in the organized working life, the methodology of horizontal leadership offers a realistic, reliable and comprehensive approach.

During year 2014 I translated the book “Inside the Change” by Adriaan Bekman into Finnish. It’s about the methodology of horizontal leadership. I have used its ideas in dozens of organizations to help to make the change. In the long standing and difficult conflict situations, which are often unfinished or failed change processes, the methodology has also shown its usability. Taking the steps in the methodological path, people can open and maintain again a contact dialogue to each other and to their core task. “Finally we can concentrate together to the essence of our task” is often the feedback of my clients.

The system of organization is based on tasks. Its aim is to produce profitable products and services. A good competence to do the task is a requirement for that. The approval is noticed when people can manage the tasks that are given for them. Human relations are occasional and based on agreements.

The methodology is processing according to the laws in the system of organization. The threefold human is in the process of becoming, standing in between the world of ideas and reality. The image of man is the foundation of the methodology.

Life in the organizations is paradoxical. The task of the work community is to solve these paradoxes and  ensure that the client is standing in the center of all their efforts. In between the tension of ideal and reality everything appears in space and time.

Among peers a good choreography, a good process is needed in order to get things moving. We must strive to create a space where a dialogue can happen. In modern hectic time the islands of humanity, dialogical space is very much needed.

To master the time, one must take control of the role that is given. One must know one’s availability. We need to prioritize the order between what is urgent and what is important. The most difficult, the hidden leader, our steering principle has to be found out and rearrange. It is a combination of our temperament, personality and experience. It contains also our values and ethics.

The key questions in every change is if my inner being is receptive and adaptive enough for the inevitable.

For that I need a reliable friend to lean on and lead learning. To make my inner and outer transformation, the methodology of horizontal leadership is a very useful and effective approach.

In the book “Inside the Change” the methodology of horizontal leadership is arranged in an evident and understandable order. When one follows the methodological steps making research work in practice, a comprehensive picture of the organized working life can be made. The exercises to deepen the content are practical working tools. One can easily implement them into the daily work.

It is rewarding that the methodology is an open resource, an ongoing developmental process. It is like our soul, living with questions. We can train ourselves to live in the world of questions and not in the world of statements.


Hannu Tuovinen
IMO consultant since 2014
IMO international board member 2015-2019