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Corporate Chess

July 17, 2007

chess-1.gif  I often contemplate the game of Chess as an analogy in examination of  corporate workplace dynamics.   There are a multitude of ways to apply the analogy or metaphor.

Interesting to me, is the consideration of people in your employ or in your network as chess pieces that may be utilized  in consort to accomplish an overall objective.   Who are your capital pieces?  What skills do they have, and what freedom of movement do they enjoy? Do they have special and unique skills like a bishop, a knight, or a rook?   Are they well experienced, capable of influencing and advancing others – perhaps represented by the queen?   Certainly, there are pawns that serve to advance the cause, but whose survival is not ultimately key to accomplishment of the end objectives.    How do you deploy and move your pieces?  Are they involved one at a time, or connected together and used in consort to overcome opposition?   Used in conjunction, their capabilities amplify the impact and effectiveness of other pieces.  

As in the game, real life play requires that strategy and tactic evolve to match the pieces you have in play at any point in time.  Unlike the game, where one begins with a full complement of pieces already in place, real life play dictates that pieces must be recognized, recruited, and developed.    Real life play adds another dimension – the capital pieces, and perhaps some of the pawns are also playing out their own version of the game, so some of the pieces exist in multiple games at the same time.   That extra dimension adds another layer of complexity, as your tactics and strategy must overlay and align with that of your capital pieces.  

You may find that you, as the player, are also a piece in someone else’s game.

One Comment leave one →
  1. August 7, 2007 2:40 am

    A rather harsh (but true) view on things. We all play parts, not only in the corporate life, but on other aspects. In local politics, with our friends and family, in clubs, in everything we participate.

    The extra dimension is the way I would of put it if I had wrote this post myself. An inters acting blog, whare each movement has ripples affecting the main board.

    We truly are players and pawns at the same time, I think it is a matter of corporate intelligence to realize what your role is, and if it can change. If you realize you’re a pawn, can you promote to queen? or can you become the player?

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