“... they sent me away to teach me how to be sensible, logical, responsible, practical...and they showed me a world where I could be dependable, clinical, intellectual, cynical…” These lyrics from the 1979 Supertramp Breakfast in America album (yes, back when an album was vinyl) stuck me while running the other day. The Logical Song was a hit single that questioned the idea we gain from the structure we learn in school and society. While we all certainly benefit, from this conformity and knowledge, there is something to be said for thought leaders.
Someone told me once that true leaders are lonely. They tend to be thought leaders and ahead of the pack. Is it possible that all the conformity the workplace requires actually causes the leader’s within us to cave to the organizational norms? We have all seen the fantastic things people can accomplish when management gives them license and let them fly. Often, our toughest job is getting out of the way.
What was the most impressive accomplishment you have seen achieved by empowering your team?