Saturday, September 15, 2007

Hypnotic Indcued Audacity

First, let me say CONGRATULATIONS to the Iowa State Cyclones!!! That a way to prove those critics wrong!!

Now, on to my post:

As my leadership class discussed Steve Farber’s book, The Radical Leap, a week ago, we were discussing the 4 LEAP elements needed to become an Extreme Leader:

- cultivate Love – love of what you do, love of your employees, love of your organization, developing a culture of love, etc.
- generate Energy – lead in a way that inspires others, that brings energy and action
- inspire Audacity – (more discussion below)
- provide Proof – walk the walk, do what you say you will do, etc

My small group within the class was discussing how a leader needs to be audacious – that is, they need to be courageous, willing to bring their ideas to the table, willing to speak up without regard for the norms set by others. We were discussing how an organization that has the other three key characteristics of extreme leadership (Love, Energy, and Proof), but is lacking that of Audacity, would have a very tough time remaining successful. The culture would begin to become bland and stagnate. Nothing would change, because know one in the organization would present their ideas for change. No one would be striving for change. In essence, the organization would begin to look like that of an organization many of you may know, Innitech.

Initech comes from the movie “Office Space,” (a great movie by the way). If you’ve seen the movie, you will remember that Initech had a very bland culture. There was no audacity in that organization (of course for that matter, there was no love, energy or proof either). It was a very apathetic organization. No one really had the audacity to bring issues to the forefront, or to offer suggestions for change. That is, until, Peter was hypnotized. Peter’s hypnotic induced audacity really helped him become more open and honest with management, as well as the infamous “Bob’s” (those consultants brought in to determine who was going to be downsized). In fact, after Peter explains to the “Bob’s” that he just is NOT motivated by management to work hard, and that he is just really working to make it through the day, they actually decide to promote him.

Now, is this movie realistic? Maybe not. Either way, I feel it’s a good example of an organization that does not have an environment that inspires audacity in its employees. I really think that the leaders of an organization need to create a culture that allows people to bring their ideas to the table. They need to create an environment of open communication. An open communication environment is going to be the key to developing other audacious leaders within their organizations. Of course, they can’t leave it at that while forgetting the other 3 “LEAP” elements!!

How are the companies you work for? Do they allow you to present/promote your ideas? Are you an audacious leader?

1 comment:

Timothy Johnson said...

It may have been fiction, but there's a reason why Office Space resonated with an entire generation of cubicle dwellers.

Hmmm... maybe we do need to hypnotize more people.