top of page
  • benjaminnewman01

Mod. 5.3 - Journal: Reflections on The Conventional Paradigm

Updated: Jul 28, 2023

Now that you've spent some time exploring and understanding the Conventional Paradigm, make a journal entry reflecting on what emerged for you, using the prompts below.

  • How might the elements of Conventional Paradigm be serving you?

  • How might the elements of the Conventional Paradigm be failing you?

  • Is it possible that some of the assumptions behind the elements of this paradigm are inaccurate?

  • Do you feel you are your best self when you are experiencing and expressing the elements of Conventional Paradigm? Why or why not?

 

How might the elements of Conventional Paradigm be serving you?

I was working as a freelancer from October, 2019 until November, 2022. In that three year period I was carrying $40,000 in credit card debt, hustling to pay monthly minimum payments, and living in my parents basement. I thought I was already digging deep when the pandemic began and it reminded me of Jack Donaghy’s quintessential expression “You must go deeper, into the crevasse.” By working tirelessly during the pandemic to gain new skills, I was able to gain several new experiences that added several feathers to my cap of career achievements and allowed me to relocate to be with a long-distance boyfriend I reconnected with during the pandemic. Now that I have a salary again, a stable income that supports an apartment I share with the man of my dreams, and a title I’ve been working to reach for a decade, I remind myself daily “Don’t. Fuck. It. Up.” While I hope I am able to use my position to move my company from H1 to H2+ by integrating a holistic approach and ecosystem understanding to our business model, I also know that I am sustaining a business model that actively takes advantage of professional musicians for the benefit of a few wealthy music lovers. While I certainly would love to go Punk Rock and burn the system to the ground and rebuild it from scratch, I also know that I need this job right now in order to give myself the security needed to actually make a meaningful contribution and change to this industry.

How might the elements of the Conventional Paradigm be failing you?

The Conventional Paradigm is failing me most in the elements of scarcity and fear. There’s a constant pressure to keep board members who barely remember we exist happy and smile through the difficulty of several operational failures that have accumulated over the past two decades. The sweat equity I’m generating is going towards creating a company culture that has consistent giving to support meeting monthly payroll, expanding pay and performance opportunities for our musicians, and developing systems that can be easily learned and applied by anyone else after I leave. While all of these efforts are important, I would argue they fall squarely within an H2- understanding of organizational change.

Is it possible that some of the assumptions behind the elements of this paradigm are inaccurate?

The challenge with the nonprofit arts business model is that we operate off an 80/20 principle of meeting our annual budget with 80% of revenues coming from donations or contributed income, and 20% coming from ticket sales or earned income. As a result, any effort to examine or remodel assumptions behind the elements dominating the Conventional Paradigm in my work have to be done covertly. The model reinforces the need for the wealthy to control what happens within the company because the costs of producing orchestral performances are too high for ticket sales to meet the costs of production.

Do you feel you are your best self when you are experiencing and expressing the elements of Conventional Paradigm? Why or why not?

I certainly don’t feel I am my best self within the Conventional Paradigm, but it does provide important value in my work because it’s the system from which everyone in the ecosystem has agreed to work. One of the challenges of paradigm shifting is that it begins with the individual, but it requires the collective in order to function at scale. I can move personally to shift my own paradigm to the Natural, but unless everyone else in my work ecosystem is also shifting to the Natural Paradigm, I’m going to appear like a crazy person. The challenge is to use consistent language across all areas and groups within the ecosystem to gauge where there is opportunity to move the paradigm towards the natural and then slowly promote those efforts and voices more broadly so others within the ecosystem can see the direction and get on board.

0 views0 comments

Comments


Post: Blog2 Post
bottom of page