My three-year old gave me another line of insight. We were doing an exercise for preschoolers where we had to connect the dots to identify the character.
I guess this is a bit of no-brainer, but I met a lot of executives and business leaders who were so enamored by an approach, methodology, or tactic that they couldn't see past it to get to the big picture. Thousands of dollars were wasted on useless training or apps that only palliatively addressed an issue in the organization, mostly cosmetic or good-to-have in the course of a highly-political or contested situation in the organization.
Is it because of looking good to the outsiders or it's about allaying the fears and skepticism of the higher-ups that middle-level managers go to the 12 steps or programs and get enough funds dispersed. After the initial euphoria and looking back, they realized that they don't have to do all the administrative, bureaucratic, and consultative arrangements to get to the root cause or suggest a solution.
People, connect the dots quickly, not on the paper but by making intelligent guesses with evidence that you can see on the ground and act in that manner.
Of course, cash is king.
While cash is king, you should/should be:
1. Operating from the position of maximizing value;
2. Eschewing perfection, perfect timing, perfect execution, perfect Zoom meetings, perfect video face, etc.
3. Doing, not overthinking;
4. Telling employees what to do, not ask them what they think they should do or you should do!
5. Not dodging the bullet, accepting responsibility for mistakes and errors of judgement;
6. Considering investing, not saving on costs;
7. Reducing output, leveraging outcomes;
8. Acknowledging some things that shouldn't have happened in the first place;
9. Finding the root cause of success and rinse and repeat;
1o. Rinse and repeat.
Don't be a super-hero in your organization.
The office is not burning.
They can live without you, even prosper.
Do you actually add value with your presence?
Your co-workers are adults. They make their own decisions.
Paper pushing is not considered work.
Don't make a to-do list. Make an outcomes list.
Stop editing yourself all the time.
Don't feign attention. Attention is for crucial matters.
Don't choose your successor.
Brainstorming is a waste of time. Get someone to do the basic thinking process.
Who has the time to make notes for everyone?
Happy Birthday Canada!
Ten Things I love about Canada:
1. Courtesy in the road for mergers.
2. Best health care in the world.
3. Hockey is culture not just a sport.
4. You can buy your native food almost all the time at every town.
5. Line ups are respected.
6. There are many answers to the question, "where are you from?"
7. Small talk frames the day.
8. Come prepared for any weather, especially in Alberta.
9. Emergencies are emergencies.
10. Enforcers enforced; they don't play tricks on you.
A few definition of terms, from the Nelson Gage Canadian Dictionary:
Norm- standard of certain type
Normal- usual, regular
Normality/normalcy/normalization-a normal condition
Normative-to do with or constituting/conforming to a norm or standard
There is nothing normal under the sun. Not in this age, not in this time.
We are in a state of flux, anything is up for grabs. There are winners and losers.
The economy and society are evolving at a rapid pace. The pandemic accelerated the turn of events even more.
Distant and remote has become synonymous to many things previously not accepted and not tolerated.
Sadly, we are not going back to the normal we had prior to this experience.
The world nowadays no longer conform to the old norm but a changing norm that we have yet to see form concretely in the next few years.
There is a pattern that is emerging from the ambiguity; not the uncertainty that is a function of indecision and paper pushing.
What is the new norm you are creating in your own organization that will assist you and also help you thrive in this volatility?
Disengagement is the best strategy to quell the temptation for overreach and overdoing.
Founders, especially have the tendencies to unconsciously usurp more control and power beyond their capabilities and their mandates within their organizations.
The best thing to do with disengagement is to completely pull away, when new leadership is established and a new mandate for them had been set up. The old guards must vacate not just physically but emotionally and ceremoniously so that their influence and their previous ideas of "how things should be done" no longer can sway the organization.
Believing that the organization will exist, will prosper, will evolve in new and exciting ways is something that should be in the mindset of outgoing leaders.
This is tough for those that have cared for the organization for a number of years, invested all their lives nurturing its development, and letting-go seemed to be a case of 'midlife crisis.'
The question for leaders hanging-on is that: would the organization best served if you continue in your role or when you go? If the answer is, they don't know.
They haven't been doing their homework thinking about accelerating goals.
Before you can reach the next mountain, you have to abandon the pretty hills on the way.