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This time next week, the world’s strongest economy will be choosing who will lead it. Over the last four years, the world has seen the impact of a particular style of leadership that will have an impact for years to come. There is much we can learn from that leadership.
Here's what we can learn.
In difficult times, people look for strong leaders, people who can take decisive action leading to positive outcomes. Sometimes this works well. But in enlightened communities, where people want to believe they have control of their own destinies, the strongman approach is really only effective in dire situations. And only then if it is effective in reducing the calamity.
I see this quite often in the companies with which I meet. Some companies have, what we used to call in Quebec, ‘le Grand Patron’ (the big boss) where a single brain and personality runs the entire company. And the employees are simply carrying out the tactical execution of whatever the Grand Patron decides is best.
In today’s economy, the knowledge economy, one brain can never win. It’s important for leaders to engage the emotions, desires, skills, intelligence and creativity of the entire team. This can only work, however, when there’s a unified purpose for the organization, a central theme, a ‘value’ of improving life and well-being for all employees and, hopefully, the world.
When you look at how the United States has changed over the last four years, its leadership has resulted in an erosion of common purpose and sharp divisions amongst the population, divisions based on race, income, red states, blue states, and politics. No entity, be it a person, a company or a country, will ever succeed with this level of aimless divisiveness and lack of unifying of values and purpose.
We have had an amazing four-year object lesson!
- What did you learn?
- What is your company’s core purpose?
- How do you engage and unify your team?
Have an awesome week.