Reflections 4 October

What I’ve noticed.

There’s an interesting continuum in what is happening. A great deal of unity and patience in the early days of the pandemic. Mutual support. Understanding that this is complex, with no instant answers. Fear as to where it might go. Genuine appreciation of those who stepped up and took the risks to look after us.

This morphed into something like weariness as rhetoric failed to meet reality, initiative after initiative dissolved into the next one with vast amounts of money being spent with little apparent regard to consequence or risk, and the end of this support rolling into sight and the impact on jobs and livelihoods hitting home as the leaves start to fall.

I sense something different now, and an impatience with the actions of those we look to for leadership. The situation remains complex and challenging, but an apparent lack of grasp on detail, and those in privileged positions looking after themselves, and treating their own rules with disdain.

There are of course many exceptions, although they seem to be small and local, whether initiatives from local government or local business. Leadership is emerging, just not from where we might have expected it.

It will be interesting as we go into winter.

What is shaping my reflections?

An increasing awareness of “noises from the edge”. People who we don’t really know making far more sense than those we do.

Being smart is not enough. Good Ideas that are implemented are far more powerful day to day than great ones which aren’t. FS Blog.

We don’t know what we have till it’s gone (Joni Mitchell). We are being subjected to to impositions and limits most of us have never known before. It’s time to reflect on our freedom, and value it.

Hanging around with people smarter than me. A valuable reflection from Shane Parrish.

A quote

I used to be a dedicated planner. I knew what I’d do every day, weeks in advance. Having a plan made me feel confident and safe. And then I got into long-distance dog sledding, and I discovered that the only thing worse than not having a plan was the stress of having one and constantly breaking it

Blair Braverman

What I’ve Learned

That we really are at an inflection point. We don’t know what the future might hold, though we can be pretty confident it won’t we an extension of the recent past. Perhaps the Aymara speakers of ancient Chile had a point, They think we reverse into the future looking backwards. If we paid more attention looking honestly at what is happenng in our recent history instead of blustering hopefully about the future, we might make better decisions.

What I’m Wondering.

Where our leaders come from.

Leaders are those who always have one foot in uncertainty, and a commitment to something that keeps them oriented and focused.

“Leadership is easy once you know what it is you’re prepared to die for”

I was told this many years ago by someone I have enormous respect for. A decorated senior officer in Special Forces, he had a way of simplifying things.

It is of course the big difference between those who lead, and those who advise them. Skin in the Game.

The last thirty years have allowed us to conflate management with leadership. We are finding out where the leaders are.

I’m not suggesting our leaders have to be prepared to die for the vision they are espousing, but rather more commitment, accountability, humility would go a long way.

We have enough managers.

Have a great week.

Published by Richard H Merrick

Complexity and volatility create enormous opportunities for those willing to go beyond the boundaries of "business as usual" to explore the edges of their business. I am an entrepreneur, a coach, a creative thinker, and above all, an explorer of possibility.

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