You Thought it Would Be Different
I have used this phrase many a time, but I did not know it was attributable to Albert Einstein. "Insanity is doing the same things over and over and expecting a different result." It is not enough to write a new vision or purpose statement. Saying that over and over might be the start to casting vision for change, for forward progress, but without substantive practical change, change in process, new skills development and different communication strategies, what makes you think anything will change? One of the biggest obstacles to change is "fair" competence. It allows you to fend off those who may be following you with mere words and inspirational speeches while underneath you are not doing anything to grow your own skills and abilities. In the end, however, what you have created is an expectation that you will not meet, and sadly, that will actually make you go backwards as those who are watching start to see through the words and realize there is no substance behind. This, of course, could be seen as a rant, but it shouldn't be, because you can always make a concerted effort to not ride on the talent, skills or processes you already know and instead start changing what you do to line up with the vision you are casting. There is a finer point here. Many leaders reach "the top", or their goal and feel that they have arrived. They deserve a break, they have garnered the skills and positional level they need, now they just need to lead others. True leadership is not authority, it is accountability, it isn't honour, it is humility, it isn't being served, it is serving others. Desiring to lead is a good thing, understanding that leadership is service: priceless.