Everybody else does what they’re told

By Pascal Dennis via blog.leansystems.org   Article

Our Most Debilitating Leadership Mental Model

“Improvement happens when very smart people, just like me, come up with clever plans, and everybody else does what they’re told.”

“That’s what I was taught in engineering and business school. Nobody call it out, we never discussed it. It was as invisible and pervasive as the air we breathed. …

Have engineering, business and other professional schools addressed this core mental model? I doubt it.

Certainly, this way of thinking is very much alive in our organizations, both private and public, and it holds us back.

Let me suggest a different way of leading:

Improvement happens when senior leaders

  • Define Purpose clearly and compellingly,
  • Define our ‘design space’ (the banks of the river),
  • Create an atmosphere conducive to creativity and initiative,
  • Check in regularly,
  • Reduce hassles wherever possible, and otherwise stay out of the way, and
  • Say thank you”
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