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A PERIODIC BULLETIN FROM LEGITIMATE LEADERSHIP

May 2017

For more information on any of these events, please email [email protected] or visit our website by clicking here

 

VIGNETTE CASE STUDY: NO BURNING PLATFORM IS NEEDED, ONLY THE WILL TO CHANGE

By Josh Hayman, associate, Legitimate Leadership.

 

We at Legitimate Leadership recently conducted a 15-month leadership transformation project in a major automotive brand’s retail operation. Over 100 of the business’s leaders, from the CEO down to frontline dealership managers, participated in the project, which was designed to help them understand and apply the Legitimate Leadership Model.

The project gave us the opportunity to witness many successes in shifting leaders’ intent from taking to giving, but one particular instance has stood out for me.

It is about a dealership sales manager in Pretoria –  Francois Fourie. When I met him at the start of the project he was a successful sales manager. He had a team of seven salespeople, most of whom had worked for him for several years. He regularly made his monthly sales target, and his people gave him consistent results – he would often find that 2-3 of his sales people would be in the Top 10 performing salespeople in the region every month.

At the start of the project Francois was assessed against the Legitimate Leadership criteria through confidential surveys with each of his subordinates (it is Legitimate Leadership’s view that the best judge of an individual’s leadership is his/her people).

READ THE FULL CASE STUDY HERE BY CLICKING HERE

 

ARTICLE: COACHING AND THE LEGITIMATE LEADERSHIP FRAMEWORK

By Stefaan van den Heever, associate, Legitimate Leadership.

 

I have been an executive coach since 2007 and I have loved working with people in this way. I believe it is a real gift when a person can hold up a clear, mostly-untainted mirror for someone so that she can come to terms with those places or areas where there are gaps or incoherence with authenticity. It has been a privilege to create this mirror and challenging space for others – and hugely meaningful to go through this journey myself.

However, in the past few years it has become clear that coaching can have only a limited impact if the system and culture of an organization, for instance, is not conducive to a coaching or learning way of leading really being “lived” by the individual in it.

During coaching, the client can gain great insights about how he shows up and can go out and implement new behaviour based on those insights. But then something can happen: it’s almost as if the new frame of reference “collides” or is in contradiction with what is going on within the organization. It happens quite often that an organization has an inspirational mission statement and values but they are only words …

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ARTICLE: WHAT PROJECTS REALLY NEED ARE BETTER PROJECT LEADERS, NOT BETTER PROJECT MANAGERS

By Josh Hayman, associate, Legitimate Leadership.

When you ask the average Project Manager what he or she is accountable for, the answer is usually: successful project results! In project-speak this means managing and controlling the constraints of time, cost and quality in delivering the scope of the project required by the customer.
The problem is that in any standard list of what a project manager should do well, all of the items on the list are about “management” – none of them are about “leadership”.

 

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 INTERVIEW WITH DANIELE BOLELLI: PHILOSOPHY, FIGHTING, AND MARTIAL ARTS MYTHOLOGY

 

A Daily Stoic interview with Daniele Bolelli, Italian-born American author, professor, professional, martial artist and podcast host.

OUR SELECTED EXERPTS FROM THE INTERVIEW:

Q: You have written, “Victory or defeat are largely out of my control, but putting up a good fight … putting up the kind of fight that makes the earth shake and the gods blush … this I can do.” Was this always a deep rooted belief – focusing uniquely on your actions and not the outcome – that you had? Or was this a lesson that you had to relearn over and over?

I don’t think too many human beings are naturally above caring about victory and defeat. It’s imprinted in us to care about the outcome of our actions. While this may be natural and normal, the problem is that we can never fully control the outcome. Usually in life there are too many variables at play. So, no matter how mightily we strive or how intense our effort, odds are that at least some of the time we will come up short of our goals. And what makes things even more complicated is that the more attached you are to the outcome, the more tension and fear you will experience at the thought of possibly facing a crushing defeat – which reduces our effectiveness, since part of our energy is trapped in the jaws of fear. Paradoxically enough, the more you focus on giving your all rather than outcome, the less fear will hold you prisoner. And the less fear holds you prisoner, the higher the odds that you will perform at your peak potential and actually get the outcome you desire. I am fascinated with this idea because it offers a concrete tool to better ourselves. I struggle with this all the time because – like most people – I care deeply about outcomes. So, for me this is an ongoing practice.

A theme that comes up throughout is that, at the core of it, martial arts training provides us with tools to forge our character. I think people often forget that character-building aspect – whether it is in martial arts or any other type of training. Can you elaborate on that idea for our readers?

Character-building is the most important task any of us can tackle. People often get overly enamored with the specific detail of their field rather than remembering that ultimately any field is only as good as it helps us become more effective and better as human beings. If martial arts are just about martial arts, then screw them – they are not that important. But if martial arts (or any other field for that matter) offer us the instruments to reforge our character, then it would be foolish to miss this chance. Zen warns us not to get lost looking at the finger pointing at the moon, and focus on the moon itself. The way I see it, the details of any field are the finger, while character-building is the moon.

In Ego is the Enemy, I used an analogy you gave me – sweeping the floor. I think philosophy is a lot like that. You don’t learn it once, or think about it once. You have to do it every day. Is there one exercise or one thought you return to most? Anything specifically from the Stoics?

Marcus Aurelius wrote his Meditations in order to remind himself of how he wanted to behave in everyday life. I think this is key – to find some type of daily ritual that puts us in contact with our highest ideals, with what Nietzsche calls ‘the hero hidden in your soul’. Visualizing the person you want to be, focusing on specific characteristics, and imagining how this person would react in particular circumstances is a useful way to try to embody these ideals into reality. Regardless of what the fans of ‘positive thinking’ say, no amount of visualizing a positive outcome ensures it will happen. But visualizing how we want to face what life dishes our way is a much more realistic, and useful approach.

READ THE FULL ARTICLE BY CLICKING HERE