There are virtually unlimited parallels between the ways that the technology of running groups can be applied to the family. I’ve written a few articles (like this and this) on the subject, as the brilliance with which L. Ron Hubbard’s administrative teachings can be used to unsnarl problems in the family never ceases to amaze. Another such facet of this is one that seems to have infinite application – a technology which can align a group to be able to achieve its goals & purposes – one called the Administrative Scale.
L. Ron Hubbard said the following in an organization policy he wrote on 6 December 1970, entitled “Third Dynamic De-Aberration”*:
“Illegal policy set at unauthorized levels jams the actions of a group and IS responsible for the inactivity, nonproduction or lack of team spirit.
“Counter-policy independently set jams the group together but inhibits its operation.” — LRH
This is straightforward to see in the setting of an organization. Let’s say the company CEO of a cake company says that “our hallmark is that we never skimp on quality of our ingredients.” But then, on the kitchen floor the lead chef spreads to his team that “it’s a PR line, and what matters most is value and price of our cakes.” The two get tangled, as Marketing tries to sell premium cakes, while the chefs deliver low-quality grocery store cardboard cakes. Obviously the problem derives from the counter-policy the lead chef spread.
But think of that same data with respect to a family. What if the husband was operating off of the policy that he and his wife were going to “do what they could” to be good parents, but the prime importance was their jobs and setting themselves up for retirement. And what if the wife was operating on the policy that the kids are all that matters, and the husband’s quality of life can always be sacrificed in the name of well-being of the kids. And what if they never spoke this out loud, but just operated on it as policy. Might serve to jam up the group.
Mr. Hubbard goes on to say in that same article:
“If we had a game going in which each player set his own rules, there would be no game. There would only be argument and conflict. — LRH”
Like that’s ever happened in a marriage. 🙂
The Administrative Scale, or “Admin Scale”
Mr. Hubbard then developed a scale which gives a sequence and relative seniority of subjects related to organizing a group. These are:
VALUABLE FINAL PRODUCTS
The video referenced above gives examples of a number of these in action for a business. But how about thinking about these with respect to your family? Sit down with your spouse & think a few of these through. What are your Goals for the family? Or, what are your goals as a husband or wife? When all is said & done, how will you measure your success? I.e. what statistics or metrics would define whether you’re doing well or poorly against your goals? Have you any plan in mind for how you want to achieve your goals for the family?
In the Third Dynamic De-Aberration reference listed above, Mr. Hubbard says of this scale:
“This scale is worked up and worked down UNTIL IT IS (EACH ITEM) IN FULL AGREEMENT WITH THE REMAINING ITEMS.
“Groups appear slow, inefficient, unhappy, inactive or quarrelsome only when these items are not aligned, made known and coordinated. — LRH”
You’re going to want to give that a good, thorough look. I know I did, and I could use more. Items abound which are possible hidden sources of trouble for the family. Like:
Goals: Obviously, in a marriage, having two partners that share the main goals of the marriage is utterly essential. If you have one parent that is only career-minded, wants to make buckets of cash and then retire on an island, while the other one wants to raise a family and devote maximum time to volunteering in the community – there will be trouble.
Ideal Scenes: What if the husband has an ideal scene in his head, that “ideally” he should not have to do any of the housework and that “ideally” the wife would just handle it all. Obviously, this will cause friction, unless of course the wife also has this ideal scene in mind as well and that’s agreed upon. Or what if the wife has an ideal scene that in “ideal circumstances” she should be able to be out with her girlfriends every weeknight partying, and that continuing to live out her college days of flirtyness with men & flashy clothes while married would be “ideal”. This may not be in agreement with ANY other items on her admin scale – especially if she has a goal of maintaining a strong marriage, or a plan to spend maximum weekend time with the kids helping them with their schooling.
Purposes: What if the main purpose the wife had for raising kids was to “show her mother” that she could raise “well mannered kids”. Or what if the only purpose the husband had for being a dad was to let his son live out his previous life as a high-school basketball star? Both of these purposes might butt up against the rest of the scale.
I’m sure if you sit & think, you can come up with a number of families you’ve observed where points above just stuck out like sore thumbs. Like, “If the thing that matters most to you in life is your kids, why did you get a job where you can never be with them?” The list goes on.
In our marriage, my wife and I have done probably three different sessions of sitting down and going over our Admin Scale. We started out as 22-year-old whippersnappers with (thankfully) the same main goals and purposes. But many things have changed throughout the years – our jobs, our lives, and then with the arrival of kids – I no longer was just “husband” – I was “Daddy”. So, that changed many of my ideal scenes, plans, projects & statistics. And I think we’re about due to give it another look.