The less clear, the less transcendent, the less transformational a vision of the future, the more people argue in the present about what happened in the past. This is especially true when people come from a transactional mindset.
You not only see this being played out in the current presidential campaigns (where the candidates are long on blame and long on problems but short on transcendent, transformational vision). You see it in start up companies that see and try to seize an opportunity, but lack a vision and a strategy.
What is necessary in both situations is a compelling, convincing and doable noble vision that enrolls everyone into wanting to join it and then wanting to make it happen. J.F.K. did it with “putting a man on the moon by 1969.” Woodrow Wlson with “making the world safe for democracy.”
Years ago I was consulting to a recovery related internet site where everyone was a recovering alcoholic or drug addict. They were having an awful management meeting that was accomplishing nothing.
At one point I stopped them and asked each person how they describe this company to anyone who asks them. The essence is that everyone said it was a place that anyone who was in danger of losing his/her sobriety could come to and be saved from falling off the wagon. After than happened, cooperation spontaneously followed.
If you find that you and others are bickering and your company is not making much progress, look for a flawed vision that people neither see nor share in.MG