There is one fundamental value that is at the core of motivating people at work. This value is often misunderstood or misconstrued, and that is a real tragedy of the modern enterprise. This value is respect for people.
What makes for an interesting story?
Language gives us seemingly endless possibilities to create stories. However, the stories that actually resonate share a common, much more limited structure. The structure of a character, a problem, and an attempted resolution repeats over and over again when it comes to good stories.
Random streams of consciousness do not make for compelling stories. Neither do dream scenarios where everything goes well all the time. Such stories leave us feeling dissatisfied and bored, there is just something not quite right about them. Our mind craves for challenges, for problems and hardships, and for the struggle to eventually resolve them and triumph.
Don’t just tell stories – create meanings and purpose
Human beings are creatures of tales and stories. Indeed, one of the most important measures of any leader or salesperson nowadays is storytelling ability. Stories motivate us and change us, their effect on our behavior and judgment far surpasses that of non-fiction: when we encounter a story, we let our guard down and become immersed in its world, allowing it to shape ours.
However, not all stories are equal. Some affect us for a short while, some end up doing more harm than good, while some bring about lasting change and purpose. When you tell a story, you are wielding a powerful tool, so wield it responsibly.
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Would you rather lead a role-oriented or a mission-oriented team?
Division of labor is perhaps the greatest invention of mankind. Not everyone has to be a part-time farmer in order to eat, and that’s awesome. However, increasing specialization is not only a good thing, and we have in many ways reached and even surpassed the limits where it is good for us.
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A lesson from privately-owned companies: long-term thinking
The stereotypical privately-owned company is slow whereas a stereotypical public company is twitchy and run on a quarterly basis. Although these may be stereotypes, they do contain a grain of truth as well. For a company to be great, it needs to learn something from both perspectives.
The lesson to be learned from many privately-owned companies is long-term thinking.
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Developing balanced leaders through Lean
Lean is a comprehensive management philosophy, and one important aspect of Lean is leadership. In this post, I will examine how adherence to Lean principles develops well-rounded leaders as measured through the lens of the 8 DISC leadership styles.