Monday 20 June 2005
Your obituary for Harold Bridger [by Lisl Klein, 2 June] rightly draws attention to his "double-task approach" to managing the tensions of organisational life,
writes John Marks. My family owned the Trebor Group, and his skill and understanding in using his psychoanalytic experience to help us work on both business and family relationships was particularly valuable to us, as well as to other family firms.
Your obituary for Harold Bridger [by Lisl Klein, 2 June] rightly draws attention to his "double-task approach" to managing the tensions of organisational life, writes John Marks. My family owned the Trebor Group, and his skill and understanding in using his psychoanalytic experience to help us work on both business and family relationships was particularly valuable to us, as well as to other family firms.
One feature of his work was that it was rooted in the realities of organisational life. The group relations training model which he called a "Working Conference" was developed in the context of consultancy with Philips UK, for whom it became a management development tool. Another feature was that, having started things, he handed them on to others. During the Eighties, for example, he handed over his Unilever management selection work to younger colleagues who had worked on it with him and who later formed the Bridge Consulting Group.
His work became increasingly international, leading to significant institutional developments, for example in Australia, Italy, Malta, Greece, Egypt and in Switzerland. Much of this was with therapeutic communities, but the Institute of Transitional Dynamics in Lucerne carried out a study with the International Council of Nurses, following at international level the work that he had done with nursing bodies in Britain, to help the Royal College of Nursing review its membership structure.
In recognition of his qualities, the British Institute of Management awarded him its Bowie Medal, and the Italian Association of Trainers its Rosa di Paracelso.
Harold Bridger's personal and professional qualities fused - his philosophy, to "start from where the other is", was not just a guide to consultancy, it was an instinct.
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