Saturday, July 15, 2017

Don't take control, take responsibility

Some people aspire to leadership because they just want to be in charge.  They think they know what's best, what we ought to do, who should sit where, and that being in that position of authority is all it will take because then everyone will have to listen to them.  I say good luck with that approach, because formal authority might (might) ensure compliance, but it won't create trust and loyalty.

Taking responsibility is something different than taking control.  What needs to happen that isn't happening?  What action can we take now?  What questions aren't being asked?  Who will take ownership of a problem or issue (even if it is just picking up a piece of litter) and commit to making the needed change happen?  And when things go wrong, who focuses not on the blame but on the lesson and finding the path to keep moving forward? 

The thing you really need in order to lead- trust- can't just be given to you; you cultivate through your actions. Taking opportunities, taking initiative, and above all taking responsibility.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

You don't know, until you know

If you are determined to do something you haven't done before, and it's important, you have to be willing to admit that you don't know...what steps to take, how it will all work, or if it will even work at all.  And that admission will put you at a disadvantage if you care about being perceived as someone who always knows what they're doing.

But if you can live with that temporary discomfort of admitting some naiveté (and it is temporary, because as soon as you admit what you don't know you start learning), you can open yourself up to get the help or the answers you actually need.  

The kind of commitment it takes to make meaningful change happen means inquiring, trying, sometimes failing, learning, and moving forward.


Freedom and accountability: can't have one without the other

This freedom and accountability matrix shows how I think these two concepts come together in the most successful working relationships. Pe...