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2012-05-16
A Reflection on CDRG

As an avid reader I felt compelled to share with you this diamond in the rough article from the Harvard Business School (HBS). As you will witness it is worthy of sharing as it provides some valuable insights for all of us who work in today's challenging business environment. Coincidentally, this business parable takes its focus from one of CDRG RedTeam's core operations

- Property Restoration


As  the story goes, many years ago a man approached a restoration site and  came across three stonecutters. Politely he asked them what they were  doing. The first replied, "I'm making a living." The second stopped  hammering and replied, "I'm doing the best job of stonecutting in the  entire country." And the third stonecutter paused for a brief moment and  replied with pride, "I'm building a cathedral." Three men doing the  same task - three men with three different views of their work,  themselves and their contributions. It's easy to observe that the first  stonecutter is committed to simply doing a day's work for a day's pay.  His work, the purpose of his work and the context of his work do not  matter. The second stonecutter has set much higher aspirations. He/she  wants to be the best. We know this type of person - bright, highly  trained, educated, driven, individualistic, yet a team player,  competitive and knowledgeable, one who measures themselves to be the  best in the country - maybe even the world. It's this type of person who  contributes significantly to the success of organizations - they are  key performers. Yet, somehow the second stonecutter hasn't fully   developed - perhaps being more interested in the task, in the  competition, in the measurement of being an individual with a highly  focused goal.

The third stonecutter has expressed a broader vision.

The  use of the word 'cathedral' speaks to a larger mission, perhaps more  spiritual with an enhanced scope - a mission that transcends bricks and  mortar, contributing to a structure that unites past and present - to be  part of something far larger than oneself. So what is the meaning of  this parable? How does it affect us here at the CDRG RedTeam or our  partners, clients and members? After all, every organization has its  stonecutters. The world's recent economic crisis was a result of a  widespread systematic breakdown that was brought about by the inability  of many to take action – who chose the easy road and simply went with  the flow knowing it was wrong, knowing that there were serious  downstream consequences and ultimately the failure by many to accept  responsibility. As we all know, the house of cards fell with devastating  results. Harvard Magazine believes this came about from a lack of  vision and a failure to acknowledge and understand that one's  'stonecutting' is inescapably part of a larger project - a world  today defined by global markets – a world without   boundaries - a world  where we are indeed bound together - a world where a financial crisis  can bankrupt nations or see major corporations fall in a flash of a  moment.

At its  core, this parable is about responsibility. The third stonecutter  reminds us that the individual is not enough, that wanting to make a  difference in the world isn't good enough - wanting and making a  difference for the world is the new CDRG RedTeam. We at the new CDRG  RedTeam will seek to be like that third stonecutter. We ask that  everyone in our network raise their sights, acknowledge that we are all  part of a bigger picture and that we are all interconnected across  communities, time zones and space. We ask our team members to respect  hands on experience, embrace change and be prepared to make a difference  for our clients and for the world. That's in keeping with our corporate  vision: "Changing the industry by Storm."

Simon Frigon
Founding member of the CDRG

"The  future is yours to grasp, the opportunity to move forward is being  presented, the decision is yours, but the true measure of success is not  measured by those who stand by watching those who succeed!"