I recently read “The OZ Principle: Getting Results through Individual and Organizational Accountability”. Drawing on the popular Wizard of Oz story and characters, the authors make several great points.
However, I am afraid they missed a key part of the original story and the fundamental truths that are intertwined within this great work.
In “The OZ Principle”, they juxtapose the relevance of the scarecrow, the tin man and the lion to weave together their own story about the steps that individuals and organizations go through to on the journey (yellow brick road) to reach the goal (return to Kansas).
What they fail to understand is that the original Oz characters are presented in a specific order. While they have woven together a nice metaphor about care, courage and intelligence – the Wizard of Oz itself is clearly based on very old teachings about the spiritual and physical realities of the world in which we exist.
Without diving too deeply into these subjects, the bottom line is that the characters in the Wizard of Oz relate to the 3 components of human reality – thought, emotion & action.
What the OZ metaphor teaches is that in order to reach enlightenment, understanding and begin to create positive change – 3 components must be developed within the self.
First, one must develop proper brain function, e.g. knowledge. (what the scarecrow lacks)
Next, one must develop healthy emotions such as care & compassion. (what the tin man lacks)
Finally, one must exercise the courage to take sound actions based on the developing and healthy balance of thought and emotion (what the lion lacks).
Each relies upon the other, and none serves as a path to positive change individually. However, what the authors misunderstand is the order of operations.
Put another way as I have heard it said – “As I think, so I feel, and so I act”. Each drives into the next, but there is only one order that actually manifests into the desired outcome.