We've become a generation of "good enough" business leaders.
We've traded a relentless focus on being extraordinary for the justification that we are following the rules. That we are doing what we've been told we should be doing -- college degree, MBA, and 5 year subscription to Smart Business magazine.
Nothing too risky.
In place of wonderment, we've adopted process, policy, and politics. There are rules for everything. And when that doesn't work we can always blame the "nine-to-fivers" for not doing enough.
If something goes wrong then we unwire the entire business process and start strategizing around the uncertainty that we just experienced.
But maybe this whole drive for understanding the process is why we find it so tough to stay motivated. To stay focused on our mission. To take the road less traveled.
We've lost our sense of breathlessness. Our curiosity for achieving the impossible.
If we can't predict it, project it, and plan for it, then we aren't interested.
But the magic behind success is what happens in spite of our anticipations -- what emerges from chaos and confusion.
Maya Angelou made the poetic observation that: "Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away."
Leadership needs an overhaul -- we need breathlessness.
- Our customers crave it.
- Our employees thrive in it.
- Our ambitions demand it.
It's the missing ingredient in our struggle for finding success.
We've tried everything else. We've tried to manage chaos; attempted to manufacture passion from school plans. We even have a bevy of tools to help us automate empathy.
And none of it has worked. None of it is working.
Customer loyalty is at an all time low. Employee retention continues to exasperate progress. Selfish sales and marketing processes dampen client engagement.
We're missing guts.
We're missing the guts to be amazing -- choosing survival over the extraordinary.
It's time to start being amazing. Being predictable and eliminating uncertainty is what is holding you back.