Planning is optimal in a controlled environment. When everything in the situation is under control – plans work. When plans are made in a context that it is not controlled – plans don’t always work. The situation changes. Feelings get … Continue reading
This is a new idea for me. I didn’t know this, and technically, I still want to do more research about this. I was talking with a friend this morning, and they were explaining to me that someone that’s a … Continue reading
The end of the year is always filled with a review of what has transpired over the year. It also is a time for resolutions; to do lists; and things that you should do differently next year. I always love … Continue reading
We talked about it in class this week. Do you know what I’m talking about? They mouth might be smiling, but their eyes give it away. It’s like they look through you or past you. Showing teeth might be a … Continue reading
There are core identity features that you just cannot control.
- What family you were born into.
- Whether you were the youngest or the oldest.
- The fact that you had to take care of your siblings – so you are now a nurturer.
There’s tons of them. And even though you can’t control them, it is still so hard to not want to. I started writing this post with the idea that since you can’t control it – why worry about it. Instead though, I want to point out that the identity features that you can’t control might be the ones that bothers you the most. It might just be a built in feature – so I give you permission to both accept it and deal with it.
….then learn how to change yourself. Actually, learn how to change something – anything. But why not start with yourself. If you can’t change yourself – the one thing that you have control over – how in the world are you going to change something – anything.
Here’s the lesson: if you want to change the world, start with yourself.
So does that mean when I complain about it that – that represents me? Does that define me? I read the line from a blog that I follow. I won’t write on here which one, but I’ll tell you if you really want to know – @Lemness or e mail me – email@example.com.
I think the better line is that you define a part of yourself by the work that you do. You are also defined by a bunch of other thing that are outside of your control:
Who your parents are.
What order you are in your family.
Where you grew up.
Why your parents divorced.
Your conditioning as a kid.
The stuff that was projected on to you when you were growing up.
You are defined by the work that you do, but not completely. Sometimes you are defined by what you don’t do as well – you lazy person you.
You are defined by things in your control (the work that you do) and by many other things that you cannot control (the work that is done to you).
I am reading Malcolm Gladwell’s book Blink. You can read what Malcolm says on his website about the book and for more information click here. It’s a book about snap judgments, rapid cognition, and thin-slicing. Read it. It’s pretty good. I write all of that to say that it’s not a book on leadership per se, but he writes about a general giving a lesson about leadership.
“The first thing I told our staff is that we would be in command and out of control.” Van Riper says, echoing the words of the management guru Kevin Kelly. “By that, I mean that the overall guidance and the intent were provided by me and the senior leadership, but the forces in the filed wouldn’t depend on intricate orders coming from the top. They were to use their own initiative and be innovative as they went forward. Almost every day, the commander of the Red air forces came up with different ideas of how he was going to pull this together, using these general techniques of trying to overwhelm Blue Team from different directions. But he never got specific guidance from me of how to do it. Just the intent.”
Malcolm writes that this management system does have it’s risks. It was messy, and he had to give up control, but it enabled rapid cognition. According to Gladwell, rapid cognition is much more trustworthy than long meetings. Read the book.
I have seen management styles that are about Command and Control. I have seen senior leaders that want to micro-manage and control every detail. They command and control everything. It is a definite management style that at some points might be needed – help me understand this if you have an opinion on it.
I like the idea and the lesson of being in Command but not in Control. Any thoughts?
For all of my Leadership Lessons