The Progressive Line Strategy: How to use it - To beat it. Part 1

by Midnight Freemason Guest Contributor
Bro. Mark St. Cyr

If there’s one topic within the Craft that elicits more biased arguments for or against than the “Chamber of Reflection,” it’s  the idea behind progressive lines. So what I would like to argue  differently in this missive is something I feel many don’t truly think  through, which is this…


Rather than allowing the progressive line (PL) system to work  against change. i.e., allowing for bad policy implementations or  weak management accountabilities to remain calcified. How can  it be made to work as to both effect change, but more  importantly, solidify that change? 

Think it can’t? Then let’s buckle up and dive-in as I’ll explain in this multiple-installment series (because it’s almost its own book)  how to do just that. But as usual, first, the disclaimer: 

This is not intended to denigrate the idea of a PL, nor the  brothers that dedicate themselves to the tasks they bear. What  this speaks directly to is how to instill a necessary change into  any management practice (our example will be the PL) that has  allowed itself to calcify, for whatever the reason. Many times  those within it (PL) may not be aware to just how hindering the  practice has become. The following is a respectful roadmap for  those that do, yet, just haven’t been able to decipher a way  through.  

So, with that out of the way, here we go… 

Rather than go through the details of what a PL is and how it works. I’m just going to assume everyone reading this knows and spare with the mundane for brevity’s sake. i.e., It’s basically a  known-known throughout the Craft.

One of the very first fundamental processes any change agent  needs to fully grasp that I’ve extensively opined on: is to ditch the  idea many other so-called “business gurus” regurgitate ad  nauseam, which is “think outside the box.”  

This scholastic platitude to any self-respecting entrepreneur is a  limiting concept from which to start from (it’s almost as bad as the brain-dead ‘right brain/left brain’ tripe, but I digress).  

The more effective starting point you need to begin with is this:  What if there is no box?  

If this sounds a lot like the famous line from the Matrix movie  e.g., “There is no spoon.” That’s great, and understanding that metaphor may be more consequential than you think at first blush. 

Note: I know there are many out there reading this thinking “Just  who does this guy think he is saying stuff like this?!” And it’s a  fair point. So I offer the following for you to think about. Most so-called “business gurus” beg to get speaking gigs at $5K. I start at $50K+. I’m not saying that to brag, I’m stating it for context only to those that usually mock first - ask repeat questions later. 

So now let’s begin to bend some rules as the idea implies.


Rather than contemplate all the ideas and mechanics that make up the current model of any PL that we’ve taken as a hindrance or obstacle. Let’s flip it on its head, and think from the standpoint that the PL, is in fact, the very vehicle to both bend and serve the will of a group of change agents for the betterment of a  bad situation. Meaning: to not only facilitate that needed change but to enable it to perpetually carry forward.

In other words, rather than trying to bend it, or change it via sheer willpower (“That would be impossible” as you remember also from the movie). Let’s use it as currently constructed to both solidify and perpetuate new and better applications. Doing this, suddenly not only the viewpoint changes but so to will it be easier to manifest the wanted effects.  

So what’s the first step?” great question… 

There is a myriad of stand-alone, along with interconnected variables and more, that would take up a library wing on each.  However, for simplicity, I’m going to keep this general in tone so you get the idea and can adapt to what will be one’s own myriad of circumstances for efficacy, which is by far the more important point. 

For reference, we’re going with a PL consisting of seven members. e.g., WM,SW,JW,SD,JD,SS,JS. I am not including the  Tres. nor Sec. on purpose, for in most instances these two figures, more often than not, have to be overcome separately regarding change than any other. And yes, I used “overcome”  intentionally. But that’s for later. Right now let’s just concern ourselves with the seven concerns of the PL. 

It all starts with seven… 

To effectively begin the process of change there needs to be a  minimum of seven brothers aligned and dedicated to the proposed change. It doesn’t matter if they’re currently serving officers, past officers, or simple members. But you need seven.  Why? 

Because if everything went your way (hey, it can happen), you need to be able to fill the entire line for true success. If not?  (Cue the scary music here.)

Now that I have your attention. (Hopefully)  We’ll discuss it in the next segment… 

See you there. 

Mark St.Cyr 


No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.