Can we face down a bully without violence? First we need to change ourselves.

Updated: May 7



Is there any effective response to Russia's behaviour? Does a systems perspective help?


The answer is yes to both questions. Bullies and narcissists don't like to be ignored, disrespected, cast out completely. They lose their power when that happens. However partial or short term exclusion doesn't work. They bide their time, manipulate every aspect and then get back into 'business as usual'. The system has not changed.


So this IS a complex challenge, with many facets. Taking a whole view and thinking long-term does help - provided that we don't resort to simple "band-aid" solutions.


As a global community we don't want or need guns or bullets to defeat Putin. We need to look to our own systemic behaviours - and to ask whether we are committed to treating Russia as the pariah it deserves to be. And we need to persist - not give up in a few weeks, months or even years. We need to permanently take away its influence - until it changes its behaviours on the world stage. So OUR behaviours have to change first.


Pity is, we could have and could have done this before the invasion occurred. The actual invasion is just a continuation of Russia's recent behaviours - not a new behaviour. Sanctions now, even those that seem severe, are unlikely to be enough. Putin has already factored them in. He knows the current system and is trying to play it like a violin. He may or may not win - but we are all at risk in the meantime.


Proactive change begins with us and with our organisations. It is possible to change and adapt before disasters or crises leave us vulnerable, and we can learn and practice proactive agility. Want to know more? Take RiskIQ's short (free) Preview Proactive-agility Survey. Or read more at https://www.riskiq.com.au/survey.


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