Sunday, May 19th, 2013

YOU ARE BOTH TERRIBLY IMPORTANT AND NOT THAT IMPORTANT AT AL

YOU ARE BOTH TERRIBLY IMPORTANT AND NOT THAT IMPORTANT AT  ALL

Your company is an organism that has a life of its own.
It adapts and shape shifts as leaders come and go and as events impact it from outside.  
You are just one influence in the stream of its history.

A CEO I worked with mused with me about his impact.
On a snowy day he came into headquarters by the front door.  There was an icy patch in front of the entrance way.  He slowed down (knowing he was famous for being clumsy) and looked down carefully to avoid looking foolish by falling.  

The next morning as he entered, he saw that the entrance had been transformed.  It had a heated sidewalk and a railing!!

He fumed to me, “I look askance and people take urgent action on their own initiative.  But when I try to move the organization, I am like a man on an elephant that is lumbering through the jungle while I madly try to direct it with a fly swatter.”

Powerful and powerless.  The CEO role is a Buddhist trip.  Sleep, wake, chop wood, carry water.  Sleep, wake, chop wood, carry water.  Results come.  Results go.  Chop wood. Carry water.  Power comes.  Power goes.  Chop wood.
Carry water.

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