I am an Idea Machine – Ideation is my number one StrengthsFinder® talent. While I was watching TV on Monday, I saw a marvelous GE commercial on how the corporate world responds to people who generate ideas. It absolutely knocked me off my feet. The Idea is represented by a creature that looks like an offspring between Big Bird and a peacock. It is repeatedly kicked to the curb, locked out of the building, and trashed as being undesirable until, morose and deflated, it walks through the doors of GE.
Have you ever re-imagined your workplace? Said to yourself, “What if…?” or thought about how much more engaged and happier you might be if just a few things changed? Well, I’ve got two wonderful men that you need to meet. They reimagine work for a living!
Thoughtless leadership comes with a price. From top to bottom, it hurts the morale and success of a team. It negatively impacts business metrics. It can destroy a brand. Those were the thoughts that ran through my head as I read about a boneheaded leader eliminating one half of the talent pool in their organization. I wondered, “Is there a time when we should not follow the leader?” I believe there is.
We are students of leadership and excellence, so what can we learn from a soft-spoken 23 year old kid who won American Idol a few years back? Plenty. I experienced it first hand when I was in the front row for a live concert with Phillip Phillips and his band (the band is key to this conversation). It was November 8th, and they were the headliner act after the Savannah Marathon. Through the close up and personal view of my telephoto lens (check out the photos!) I observed Phillip Phillips demonstrate three very important leadership lessons. Let’s review them together.
One of the best things about coaching colleagues is the gift they give back; you’ve both had the chance to watch each other in action. There’s no better way to judge someone’s amazing talent than through a “live audition.” This gift of observation is precious when people make the time to talk about it. I experienced this recently – here’s what went down.