#ThoughtsFromTerry Dispatch w.31.2018
WHEN A DIFFERENT GEAR DOESN'T WORK
This week I had the opportunity to walk some great leaders through some challenging situations. I will stay a bit vague for obvious reasons, but generally speaking what we talked through was that sometimes a different gear doesn’t work. A car has different gears for different purposes, just like in our leadership we need to use all the gears regularly. But, I have found shifting gears, bringing higher intensity, challenging the norm, or pushing for innovation through capacity sometimes falls short.
So, what do you do when a different gear is not working? I recommend jumping in a different vehicle. You see, a Tesla Model X P100D is a fantastic car! However, if you find yourself in the African Sahara you won’t make it very far, you need a Land Rover. Switch cars! The Land Rover might not feel as comfortable, we know it won't. It's not as fast, agile or smooth...but it is what you need for that specific situation. As leaders, we must learn to be adaptive and have the ability to operate outside our strengths and natural wiring on a regular basis. Leading people, teams and especially ourselves, can be very challenging. Everyone is different; people and teams respond to different leadership styles and are inspired in different ways. As leaders we can not fall into the trap of staying in the same three to five gears, we must be willing to change cars. We have to get outside of our usual style of leading and be willing to take a different, often uncomfortable path to drive to the outcome needed.
I am not sure what this looks like for you, but trust me, it will not feel natural at first. Be willing to take a risk, step outside of your comfort zone and be ready to adjust and flex your natural leadership style when you’re not seeing or getting the results that are required. The more practice, the better you will become at changing your leadership gear. The same is true about changing your car.
Your capacity as a leader is directly tied to your ability to adapt in the moment.
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RECOMMENDED WEEKEND READING
Stop searching for a calling and start hiring people who disagree with your mission
Wow!!! That’s a bit of a shocking statement from Adam Grant. I am not sure I agree, and therefore it’s a must read for me. No matter your opinion or viewpoint please make sure you are reading and always learning from those who don’t necessarily see things as you do.
The power of moments
One of my favorite reads recently has been The Power of Moments by Chip Heath and Dan Heath. It’s an amazing read that I highly recommend. If you have not read the book yet, here is a great post about it.