When Leaders Work Together
I’m trying to do my work in the back of the balcony while my children rehearse for the upcoming stage production of ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’ but I’m constantly distracted by the various voices that make up the leadership network at the local playhouse.
In addition to seeing my 9 year old (she’s the star) grow into a work ethic my father would be proud of I keep hoping all three of my girls recognize how leaders work together for a common objective.
There’s an old adage that the fish can’t describe his environment because he lacks the objectivity having never known another.
Unfortunately the corporate image of leadership is often depicted by one-upmanship, backstabbing or some other negative connotation. To make matters worse disagreements are often aired directly to the very people expected to follow these leaders.
Everyone works best when their roles or tasks are clearly defined. Leaders who join themselves together typically do so to take advantage of the best they can offer each other. Setting guidelines allows for individual excellence while framing expectations for each objective.
When the leadership network is expected to inspire or motivate a group of followers the level of respect they share with each other will determine the overall positive influence upon the entire community.
I’m trying to imagine what a disaster this performance would be if the cast (largely amateurs) had to endure bickering between the music director, choreographer and stage manager. Instead I can tell they’ve spent hours working together designing the entire production and their respective roles.
Behind the Scenes
Even if the community you’re leading doesn’t know what your leadership network has done to prepare in advance for a meeting or conference they’ll be busy either consciously or subconsciously evaluating your leadership. The basis of their evaluation may be on what they experience but that experience is shaped by what they never see.
After watching only a fraction of the rehearsals (30 + hours and counting) and realizing I’m not even exposed to a 10th of what my 9 year old has already endured, I have a deeper appreciation for what should take place before people start asking us for money.
An hour long presentation that took 30 minutes to throw together isn’t going to impress anyone. Just as it takes a great deal of time and effort funneled into a relatively short performance to entertain an audience, it takes a lot of effort to impress and even more to inspire an entrepreneur.
Pulling out all the stops is expected these days. It’s getting harder and harder for individual leaders to compete because a leadership network is capable of delivering much more value for the same cost.
Entrepreneurs know they’re all destined to leadership so trying to deliver a performance that is substandard isn’t going to sit well with them. They’re looking for the very characteristics and behavior they’ll one day model.
When leaders come together and unite to deliver a performance that is far superior to anything they’d be able to do on their own, they not only offer guidance and a great model, but a pattern that can and should be duplicated.
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