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Sunday, September 19, 2021


Trying to force others to change is a fool's game. (Ask me how I know.)

I've worked for control freaks. They made me, and all the others they were trying to control, freak out. More importantly, those control freaks generated highly committed resisters.

So, if change toward betterment is a desired goal, what is the alternative to control freak-ism for those of us in leadership roles?

From both my observations and experience, some helpful strategies that invite others into the continuous improvement (aka "change") process:

-Build bridges, not walls. Resist mightily the temptation to diminish, devalue, demonize, and alienate those whom you are trying to influence. Much tongue-biting is required.

-Invite, don't incite. Pulling is always a better leadership strategy than pushing. The amount of resistance is directly proportional to the amount of push.

-Manipulate not. TRUST is the precursor to followership. Transparency, full disclosure, and willingness to consider all relevant data is a must. Once trust is lost, it's a very long slog toward the elusive re-establishment thereof.

-Inquire ad nauseam.  Ask strong and interesting questions that pull others into meaningful dialogue around the areas desired improvement - personal and organizational. Just as we know with those dealing with addictions, until and unless they themselves begin to see and understand that there is an addressable problem, solutions (however efficacious) are irrelevant.

If anybody told you leadership is easy, they're delusional.

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