Monday 10 May 2010

How Great Leaders Inspire Action

I came across a great video on TED last week and it inspired this post. The video clip (from a guy called Simon Sinek) is simply stunning in its simplicity and has real potency in the message. His core tenet is "People don't 'buy' what you do but WHY you do it". He uses 3 great examples: Apple, The Wright Brothers and Martin Luther King Jnr.
Our decision making is based on what things MEAN to us. That's why the picture is so true. Our emotions tell us what's really going on. Here's the link; http://www.ted.com/talks/lang/eng/simon_sinek_how_great_leaders_inspire_action.html

The beauty is ANYONE can learn how to do this. I link this to another insight I uncovered recently related to this concept. People who are good at operating from 'WHY' as per the video clip are often Visionaries or Early Adopters.

I've grown to realise that while having a Vision is important, making a Decision is even more important. Here's the link. It's how to make the dream become a reality.

Dreamers are vital people, especially dreamers of the day (not the same thing as day dreaming!), but people who turn dreams into action are like gold dust! Many of the best Visionaries of the works (Bill Gates, Walt Disney, Martin Luther King) would have failed unless they had people around them who could turn these dreams into reality.

I equate it to the analogy and the relationship between Leadership and Management. Leaders see further ahead and much sooner than most people. (They get the WHY...Disneyworld, Computer in every home, etc) but they often don't know HOW to make things happen (Walt Disney's brother Roy made the dream come true). The person with the idea is like the DANCER and the first follower helps turn it into a MOVEMENT! This is a powerful insight. We are typically either one or the other. very few people are gifted in both areas (that would be unfair!). I realise I paint in big pictures and don't always hold all the detail............so I married someone who does! When we work well together we make a powerful team and that's when real SYNERGY happens.......(we create something togtehr better than either of us could alone)

So, what are you a WHAT or a HOW person...? It's an important question to know how to answer. It can affect the boss you next want to work for (how do they do Visioning, Strategic Thinking etc) or the person you want beside you to implement a major project (handle the detail and follow through on commitments.

Let me know your thoughts.....

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