The Graves Model Explained by Example </span><span>– Level 3 The Empire</span><span> 

Culture & Organisation

The Graves Model Explained by Example – Level 3 The Empire 

On which Graves level are people, societies or companies? What are their predominant values and what distinguishes them? Bettina answers these and other questions in the eight-part series that expands on the article "The Graves Model". After all, the better we know the systems that exist within us and those that affect us, the easier it will be to live together in our world.

At the third stage - which is called "The Empire" or in colours the "Red Stage" - the I or the ego comes to the front for the first time. It is the first time that individual needs take priority, and they want to be lived out properly. Red therefore embodies above all impulsiveness, lives in a self-centered way and strives for independence. Children live through this stage between one and a half and five years and during puberty. Pride, recognition and being respected are of crucial importance. Humiliation and mortification are the worst.

Our needs are the red portion. Recognizing and living these is particularly important for personal development. With the punitive mandate: "you are selfish" healthy red is often suppressed.

Core concepts / values: Willpower, power, passion, innovation, pioneering spirit, freedom, arbitrariness, impulsiveness, creativity, courage, power without morality, selfishness, aggression.

Character: capricious, arbitrary, egocentric, innovative, dictatorial, provocative, reckless, fast, erratic, unpredictable, rebellious, intransparent

Occurrences: rebellious youth, pioneers (Elon Musk, Steve Jobs, etc.), despots (Hitler, Gadaffi, etc.), investment bankers, feudal kingdoms, epic heroes, gang leaders, soldiers of fortune, new-age narcissism, wild rock stars

Dominant themes: Who am I here? My initiative, my creativity, my tasks? What is there to overcome, the challenges, the competition? How can I come into my own? How can I strengthen myself? How can I contribute?

All Graves levels at a glance

Red in Business

Management in red means centralized power. Decisions are made "top down. Bosses become charismatic, but also choleric doers. This level is typical for "start-ups" and pioneer work. It is based on simple structures and there is hardly any delegation. Everything is a matter for the boss. For employees, it can sometimes be quite difficult in such organizations, especially in management positions. The double message is: lead the team, but don't make any decisions that are not in my best interest. That can't be so hard!

Red's greatest strengths are its courage, creativity and pioneering spirit. Red leadership can therefore be very suitable when it comes to the pioneering phase. Overall, it has a very destabilizing effect and it becomes impossible for a company to grow further.

Instruments: status symbols such as boss parking spaces, job titles, single offices. Piecework, "hire and fire", appointment of the employee of the month.

Red in transition to blue

The red part in a person causes the person to pursue and satisfy their own interests in the first place. However, this extreme impulsiveness prevents deep relationships and can be very lonely.

The way out of arbitrariness is order and rules. Therefore blue follows red.

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