In our Western understanding of how to find meaning, our philosophers over the past few centuries have gravitated to logic models, trying to apply scientific method to the complex understanding of all things. Even the names of recent Western philosophies have borne such names as Rationalism, Analytical Philosophy, and Logicism. We live in an age that celebrates and reveres logic as meaning. Data and metrics are the answer. What’s the question? Continue reading
Decisions can be relatively inconsequential, but when they are tough ones, one of the complexities leaders face is how quickly they need to make the decision. As illustrated in last week’s blog post about James Comey’s many decision points, sometimes you have more time to develop good assessments, and other times you don’t.
Comey gives us an audacious role model to examine around his choices to act. He did things that are either bold or insolent, depending on the eye of the beholder. And while the political environment exaggerates the effect of his actions, they are situations leaders face frequently. Let’s look at some of the parallels. Continue reading
Jan watched with dismay as her employee Henry forged ahead in his presentation to the senior leadership team, failing to read the body language that should have been signaling to him that the group was clearly not buying in to the foundational rationale for his proposal. She tried to catch his attention, but even when she did, he did not seem to pick up on her concern, and kept right on going. Finally, Jan stepped in. “Let me add some information about Henry’s rationale for this proposal,” she said, and took over the description of the research that had anchored the proposal. When she was sure the leaders were back on board, she asked Henry to proceed. All the questions after that point were addressed to Jan, not to Henry. Continue reading
Yolanda argued long and eloquently with her peer vice presidents about a proposal that she felt was risky, inconsistent with company values, and would have a negative effect on employees, causing layoffs that she felt were unnecessary. Despite her well-reasoned thinking, the majority of her colleagues supported the proposal, and a decision was made to move forward with it. The CEO asked the vice presidents to work out a strong communication plan to their reports, and begin the process of communicating the decision immediately, so that the proposal’s implementation would not be delayed. Continue reading