More on leadership…

Nick Annetts from Wunderman Bangkok inspired me with his analogy of the motorway – check out his comment in last week’s posting. Basically, his point was that a good leader understands his team and chooses the right lane for each member – some fast; some slow; some at the speed limit, if you will. That got me thinking not so much about leaders as about the challenges they face on that motorway – specifically directing traffic into the right lanes. Put the wrong person into the wrong lane, and you have a pile-up. If you see the metaphor, this can be disastrous not only for the business but also for the person/people involved.

Needless to say, all of the above led me to a quote from one of my favourite sources:

“All mankind is divided into three classes: those who are immovable; those who are movable; and those who move.”
– Benjamin Franklin

Clearly the immovable folk need to be in one lane, and what a tie-up they create! The movables ones can travel, but think about what it takes to get them up to speed? Who has the time or the energy? And then there are those who just move. These people only need “travel directions” – keeping the metaphor going.

As a leader, where do you spend your time? How do you deal with the immovables and the movables? How do you get the right ones into the moving lane, and how do you avoid creating massive traffic jams and tragic accidents?

Serious Urban Planners would no doubt ban the immovables and restrict the movables…any thoughts? Maybe a new hiring filter…

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