As we take on the challenges post pandemic we will be faced with complications and adversity that may set us back. Honesty, perseverance, and trustworthiness will become major factors in
overcoming these obstacles and creating our personal brand, and our legacy of how we handled these difficult times. As a leader you will need to be an honest and trusted leader to establish your vision, mission, and values so that those in your care or supervision will trust you enough to follow.
The reality is that growing a business is a lot of work and you are constantly forging a path to transform yourself, your people and your organization into a high-character, high-performance
leader, team, and organization. You will never be without challenges both in life and business. But if you are focused and ready to face these complex business challenges and personal
changes with discipline, determination, honesty of purpose, and in an ethical manner you will be
One of the pitfalls we must avoid in managing through these unprecedented times are Urban Legends, catchy phrases, or theories we have heard our entire careers. You will need to build
a plan that works for you, commit to it, allow it to build on itself, and do the same things repeatedly, even when you are bored with the consistency of your message.
Let us talk about some of the Urban Legends we have all heard throughout our careers that we may have to avoid, and people repeat like parrots that are either not true or not applicable during
these unprecedented times. Two quick examples we have all heard are:
• The first mover advantage is the key ingredient of success.
• Successful entrepreneurs are young, and science/computer based
Psychologically, urban legends are a way for us to make sense of the world around us, the situation we may be in, and our ability to manage threats real or perceived in a safe environment.
From the perspective of tried-and-true theories people believe this may be the safest way to go. This is important because this will help to validate a person’s worldview and in doing so
legitimatizes their fears as real and genuine and moves them to the safest bet.
Let us talk about two more Urban Legends that we may want to reconsider, that we have all heard time and time again:
A. One that you hear often is The devil you know is better than the Devil you do not know. While this may work with Wall Street investors who like consistency it can be harmful in
many ways as a leader. Let us take it from two perspectives.
1. People: you may stick too long with a person who may need a change of job, scenery, or maybe that person is underperforming and needs a new position. But the real casualty in this is Diversity and the value you place on Diversity in terms of diversity in your people, diversity of thoughts and encouraging a wide range of viewpoints among team members to avoid groupthink and create more culturally sensitive solutions. It may be time to move on from the devil you know.
2. Business: Sticking with the devil you know does not allow you to Identify and successfully generate new products, markets, and geographic growth opportunities. It stifles you from
continually searching for ways to add value and to position the organization for future success.
B. It is not the plan that is important, it is the planning
1. If you focus on the planning process (the activity of planning) only and not the desired outcome and how to accomplish the desired outcomes, along with the key metrics, you will be leading an organization with a poor plan and poor results with some great planning meetings. To me it brings into question the Business Acumen of the leader. Do they Understand and have experience in all functional areas of their business? Do they understand finance as the language of business and use it to effectively monitor and improve business performance and do they know how to utilize a Balanced Business Scorecard to augment financial planning? They should be credible with the investor community and seek to have all stakeholders participate as they are building the plan. Finally, they need to become an expert in all aspects of business planning and lead the management team in highly effective planning protocols.
Purpose-driven people put their morals, character, and honesty first. Without purpose, we drift. With purpose, we steer. You have a responsibility to yourself and to others to use your best judgment, weigh your options carefully, and make the right decisions—even if they go against the proverbial Urban Legends and Rule of Thumb.
Wherever your path takes you as you emerge, know that your trustworthiness is your highest honor. For if you are a trusted leader, others will believe in your vision, mission, and values and
will trust in you enough to follow you. That will be your legacy. Create your Own Urban Legends.
For more on this topic, pick up your copy of TIGHTEN THE LUG NUTS where many of
these thoughts and concepts are built out further, and visit our website at
For additional information on these critical topics for success visit our newsletter section at https://www.3sixtymanagementservices.com/category/newsletters/.
” As you move through difficult periods on your way to success, do the ‘right thing’, take
care of your customers, treat others with dignity and respect, celebrate successes and
your reward will be, “The Leader of Choice.” You will create a place where your people
will thank you for not letting them stray or compromise their values and ethics. They will
be excited about other ways they can participate in successfully reaching their goals and
those of the organization.”
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