August 15, 2015

142 and counting

Richie McCaw will play his 142nd Rugby test tonight.  A world record. He should get to 147 and if the ABs get through the quarter finals at RWC15 to 148 or 149.  Sir Graham Henry says he’s the most influential player in the history of the game. Only two yellow cards (one this year as I recall). Seems calm, dependable, strong and is held in respect. Looked pretty angry last week when the team failed to fire. But didn’t lose his cool (not that we saw anyway!). All great leadership traits.

The rugby public enjoy and admire him.

I’ve never heard Richie McCaw boo or bad mouth an opponent. Even when he’s been eye-gouged he shrugs it off as part of the game.

Tonight the Wallabies will kick for goal.  AB fans will boo to try and put Quade Cooper (a Kiwi) off.

If it’s good enough for Richie McCaw to swallow any bad play directed at him, it’s good enough for us to respect the opposition. Play hard, hate to lose, but don’t be a bad sport.

The public should follow Richie I reckon.  Then the occasional loss wouldn’t be such a bitter pill. Maybe!

Stephen

August 7, 2015

A winter mojo

Maybe it’s a general malaise, winter, too much work or not enough on reflection time. In a moment of escape from the intensity of work it occurred that I’d lost my mojo. A colleague said it wasn’t anything that a holiday wouldn’t fix.  He’s probably right.

It got me thinking about why and how we lose our mojo. Paris on stephendrain.comIs it one thing? Work perhaps?

Experience tells me it’s never one thing, not often just two things but a combination of too much and too little.

For me too much of the same, too many deadlines and too little reflection and things that add meaning to be personally.

The last bit is it. Meaning. Which is why for me the first blog in two months. A place I went to, to start getting my mojo back.

What will you do?

Stephen

May 31, 2015

Separation anxiety

I was talking to a good friend yesterday about my son’s departure for England today. I went through all the things he had done to prepare and all those who support him have done too. It all sounds logical, rational and for for my son, it’s no doubt very exciting. A great adventure. After a while my friend declared that I simply had separation anxiety. I’m pretty sure he’s right. Bugger, something I can’t just manage though doing things.

My father told me years afterwards, that when I left home at (just) 18 to join the police, he felt much the same. I can remember the leaving, feeling pretty confident, excited and wondering why my parents looked somewhat serious! Now I know. I said my goodbyes and strode to the aeroplane.

Finding your own feet and being responsible for what happens, and dealing with it, is probably the first (and arguably the most important) leadership step.

So as he sets off, it’s a tear in my eye for sure, but those broad shoulders will confidently walk through to immigration and off he’ll be. I’m certain he’ll have a great time. I miss him already and he hasn’t quite gone. Lovely young man he is. But he has to look forward. I did.

Stephen

May 25, 2015

A testament to our own choices in time

In the movie Testament of Youth young men enthusiastically head to war in 1915 to “do the right thing”, for a bit of an OE and to join their mates. When I walked out of the cinema the phrase Testament of Stupidity came to mind.

Most of the people I know are fortunate to have choices in life. Some people don’t because of restricted society rules, war, cults and other tragedies of humanity.

The young men in the movie appeared to be making free choices. No doubt those who survived would agree that they had far from full information.

We start the Authentic Leadership Programme this morning with 18 managers embarking on a journey of discovery about themselves and others. We’ll start by learning about individual preferences and what others say about us. It won’t be exact information, but time, space and resources will be freely given to enable all the participants to interpret the information and plan for their individual next steps.

Taking new information on board to develop our leadership requires deliberate actions to be made by leaders to ensure the new insights are properly understood, interpreted and acted on. It can’t just be accepting someone’s interpretation of “the right thing” or what our mates are doing.

On the first day of the Programme, and in the ensuing months, our managers will be encouraged to make deliberate choices and changes in their leadership based on full information, reflection and planning. What will matter will be what is best for each leader to grow his or her leadership potential, their teams and their organisation.

Pressure will come for sure, it’s not always easy making changes, but the pressure will be based on honest and full information.

Stephen

Despite my post-movie reaction, Testament of Youth is a powerful story and a great movie.

%d bloggers like this: