Ron's Material Leadership Blog
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Thursday, December 6, 2007
Hang Tight Everyone
A quick note to say that I am working it. It has been a while since I had to coordinate interviews with busy people. This is taking a while. I am certain my persistence will pay off in some valuable insights to share with you. I have four interviews in the works currently. Two with very talented bloggers, another with a professor and the fourth with a well known author. Each of these individuals I respect greatly and am hopeful to start posting the interviews within the week.
I can envision a number of others beyond this but lets stay in the moment.
I am as constant as the northern star...
Did you see Star trek IV? This is my favorite quote from that movie. I suppose Shakespeare and Julius Cesar should also get credit for it. I love the metaphor. Every time I think of the importance of consistency in purpose, I think of this quote. Luckily I do not consider the ill fated gentlemen who uttered it . The quote gets a bad egotistical wrap. Regardless, constancy of purpose is critical to a leader.
Constancy of Purpose
As I dig in and work toward realizing these important interviews, I am reminded of some wisdom around this concept of constancy of purpose.
What's todays Vision?
I once followed a leader in a volunteer capacity who had a new vision every couple of weeks. This used to drive me nuts. Just pick one I often exclaimed in frustration. The people who want to follow you need to know where you want to go. They don't want a new constantly changing vision.
If you think about communication and how remarkably difficult leadership communication is in the first place, you will see the impossibility of this position. They have not even understood the last vision and now you are painting a new one. MAKE UP YOUR MIND! Decide upon a clear direction and immerse yourself in it.
Communicate Communicate Communicate!
Once a leader has a relatively clear sense of purpose, of vision, of process they should communicate it. They should communicate it often, repetitively and in many forms, with pictures, in stories, in metaphors, in simple understandable language. Just when you are getting sick and tired of saying it, they will start hearing and understanding.
No, not weirdo in need of mouth wash, the inevitable growth of a purpose as peripheral good intentions are added onto the purpose until it is unrecognizable. A leader must stay true to their leadership purpose and learn to respectfully and empathetically say no to those things outside the scope of their purpose.
The Never Ending Story...
All good things must come to an end. Unfortunately many things just die a horrible death of neglect and guilt. The next time you lead a group to achieve a purpose, when you have achieved your desired end, celebrate the achievement and at the same time the funeral of the team that achieved it. Dignified endings are in! It is the only way out of the never ending story...
Well thats it! I am back to investing in the process, you to your own leadership purpose.
See you soon with a great interview...
Thoughts on a Recent Read
The Dip by Seth Godin
This was the first of Mr. Godin’s books I have read and I must say it will not be the last. I enjoyed this book and found its message wise and on point for our age. The premise of the book is that there is a time to quit a role, project, effort and a time to stay. When we have the opportunity to be the very best and are willing to pay the price, it is time to stay. When it is clear that staying will result in mediocrity or worse yet (Mr. Godin’s term for a dead end) a cul-de-sac, it is time to move on to something where we can be our best. The dip is the place in between. The place where we face opposition, adversity and discouragement. It is here that many wrongly chose to give up when greatness is not that far away for the brave souls who persevere.
Compelling: Very much