Vision and strategy are both important. But there is a priority to them. Vision always comes first. Always. If you have a clear vision, you will eventually attract the right strategy. If you don’t have a clear vision, no strategy will save you.
I have seen this over and over again in my professional and personal life. Once I got clear on what I wanted, the how almost took care of itself. Let me give you an example.
I am not your average leader. My leadership decisions don’t affect the boardroom, but they do the future of the world because I am raising two future leaders. I am a domestic engineer, a home economist, a housewife, a mom. I have found that my leadership at home has taught me lessons that any leader, whether in the board room or the laundry room, can use.
- If it stinks, change it. This philosophy applies to diapers and to decisions. As leaders, sometimes we may “own” an idea so tightly, that even when shown data that the idea is failing, we keep holding on to it. A leader should be able to change. As Gary Shapiro, president and chief executive of Consumer Electronics Association and co-author of a book on innovation puts it, “Mistakes are OK—hiding them is not.”
Sometimes, success is simply a matter of making one small adjustment. For example, at 211 degrees, water is hot. But at 212 degrees it boils. This makes all the difference.
Sam Parker and Mac Anderson expanded on this simple metaphor in their short book, 212°: the Extra Degree. They wrote,
I will be leading one of the Catalyst Labs on the subject of my new book, Platform: Get Noticed in a Noisy World.
A few weeks ago, I sat down with an old friend to catch up. He lost his job about nine months ago in a recession-induced layoff and has been unable to find another job. He’s had plenty of interviews just no offers.
“What’s wrong with me?” he asked. “Why won’t someone offer me a job?” He was clearly discouraged.
Whenever I speak on the topic of platform-building, someone always asks, “How can I generate more traffic for my blog?” Most are hoping I have a silver bullet, something that will instantly get them the recognition they deserve.
The bad news is that it’s not quite that simple. Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither is a platform. It takes doing several things right—and doing them over a long period of time.
BlissDom is the premiere conference for women who find and express their bliss by publishing online. I am so excited to be speaking at this year’s conference. Their new format looks terrific!
No one is perfect. No one can be right 100 percent of the time (even if you are Jack Welch or Steve Jobs), including an organization’s leaders. But there are mistakes, and then there are MISTAKES.
I have found 10 basic essentials that all leaders should have on their list entitled “things to avoid at all costs,” lest they end up on the wrong end of a no-confidence Board vote, a Shareholder lawsuit, or worst of all, an SEC subpoena.
What task-manager application are you currently using and why?
This is a collection of 50 quotes about doing the impossible. It includes quotes from a wide array of historical figures, including Marcus Aurelius, Sir Walter Scott, Alexander the Great, Pearl S. Buck, and even Jonathan Winters. Thanks to Joel Runyon at ImpossibleHQ for bringing this to my attention.
I am a high-energy person. But I haven’t always been that way. There have been times in my life when I was utterly exhausted. Times when getting through the day was a big chore. Times when I had nothing left to give by the end of the day. Times when I just wanted to collapse into bed and pull the covers over my head.
But in recent years, I am been very deliberate about managing my energy level. I did a lot of reading on this and took the time to educate myself. I experimented. I tried some new things. I broke some old habits. Now, my energy level remains pretty constant through the day.