“Power isn’t control at all — power is strength, and giving that strength to others. A leader isn’t someone who forces others to make him stronger; a leader is someone willing to give his strength to others that they may have the strength to stand on their own.”
― Beth Revis
You may have heard about the recent event on United Airlines that resulted in having a passenger forcibly removed from a plane. It was an event that you’d think would never happen unless that passenger was threat to others or the plane. In this case it was just someone unfortunate enough to be “randomly” selected to give up their seat to an United employee.
The event is a great lesson in leadership or the lack of leadership. Years ago a great experiment was conducted, “The Stanford Prison Experiment” which demonstrated that just following the rules can lead to unwelcome outcomes. Something similar happened when the gate agents followed their rules and asked for some help from the security contingent. The security team decided to forcibly remove the passenger (just doing their job). In the process of removing the passenger, the passenger was injured. As it turns out people will conform to their roles and act accordingly.
When leadership doesn’t empower their employees to provide great customer service they rely on the rules, rules that don’t take into consideration the meaning and real value of the people who are to be served.
What would need to change for United to be a customer focused organization?
“The dogmas of the quiet past, are inadequate to the stormy present. The occasion is piled high with difficulty, and we must rise — with the occasion. As our case is new, so we must think anew, and act anew. “
–December 1, 1862 Abraham Lincoln
Make today the day you start doing something new for yourself. In 1862 President Lincoln called out to say, “we face a new day, a new era, new changes and we can no longer think and act like we did in the past.” We are at that new day, that new era, that new place and we can no longer depend on what worked in the past to work for us in the future.
The economy is floundering and bouncing around without a clear direction. It is waiting for something but what? It is waiting for “you” to take action.
If you’re thinking, “How can I change the economy?” It starts when you fully engage in everyday life. It starts when you go to work and you put in 100% of you into the work. It starts when you put 100% of you into life. It starts when you believe that you can make a difference.
One of the problems we face today is the fact that everyone is waiting for someone else to make a difference. Take a look at a company like Zappos where their values reflect leadership, authenticity, and creativity. They have abolished a model of leadership that should have passed away at the end of the industrial age. It is a place where ideas flourish and egos (those who use positional power as a leadership model) have faded out of the picture. Zappos has instituted a new model of leadership that engages people in the work they do. The point is that when a company (which is just a large community of people with a common purpose, focus and goal) takes action things happen for the good. If you took action and had a purpose, focus and a goal imagine what would happen in your life.
If you are waiting for something to happen for you then you’re not taking charge of your life. If you are someone who is desiring to create change not only for yourself but for others then what are you waiting for. The time is today to make the change for you.
When do you want to start living the life you really want to live?
“To change one’s life: Start immediately. Do it flamboyantly. No exceptions.” William James
Posted in Careers, Change, coach, Communication, community, Leadership, Uncategorized
Tagged change for the better, economic future, economic model, stormy present, the time is now, your life, Zappos
“The most dangerous person on the planet is the person with no hope.”
John Hope Bryant (CEO of Operation HOPE)
What does a leader do? A leader inspires hope, a hope for a better tomorrow, a better you, a better world and better lives for everyone. A leader inspires beyond what they want for themselves but what they see is a better world.
All too often leaders of the current era are working to promote their own good. A quick look at the current economic crisis will quickly dispel the myth that the leaders of the financial institutions were real leaders. The corporate banking “leaders” were figuring out ways that would increase their own wealth at the expense of many others.
The world is now hungry for a new breed of leadership. The kind of leadership that serves others globally (not locally or with a limited audience) and helps to start a movement to serve all people in all places.
Perhaps the next shift in leadership will be in the development of community based enterprises that collaborate together, living in harmony using organic principles of organization to create a thriving global economy. Think of the world as a balanced ecosystem rather than a hierarchical system where relatively few have enough.
The power of collaboration inside and outside of current organizations to create a larger dialogue that is about ideas will benefit everyone. Moving from a small base of power where ideas are kept locked up and hidden behind to a place where ideas percolate in a global community to be refined and developed would benefit more rather than fewer.
What stops people from leading? Fear!