MISCELLANEOUS WRITINGS | 2019 EDITION | VOLUME 20
Occasionally, on their way to the top, reality humbles those ignorant of fundamental unwritten rules of success. Yet self-awareness is fundamental. Regardless how spoiled one is, who tells them they're great, what they choose to believe about themselves, or how often they get away with being rude.
So you're the man, the woman, the boss. Thousands report to you. Thousands, or millions follow you on social media. If like Donald Trump or Xi Jinping, billions of lives depend on you. You've overseen millions or billions of dollars in revenue. But does all that really make you an evolved leader?
Do you have substance abuse, depression, anxiety or self-esteem problems?
Do you know how to build a smart, authentically diverse, non-toxic workplace culture?
Do you even possess the emotional intelligence and discipline to oversee such an effort?What about the relationship management skills to hire, train, and retain next-level high performers?
Yes. As opposed to, for example, the Trump Administration's ever-growing infamous list.
From firings, (forced) resignations, departures related to (criminal) investigations, and more:These are all questions revealing true leadership acumen and the capacity to build an EVOLVED culture. Malignant narcissism and mental health, matters. That's why, going back to the contestants above, how do handle rejection? Do you throw a fit and harbor hate when others don't validate you or your dreams? And if so, doesn't that make you a snowflake, and your customer service skills bad?The hypertext and feature image (click/tap others) address in granular detail what it really means to be an evolved human being. But whether one is talking about CEO naiveté à la Mark Zuckerberg, the likes of Twitter's Jack Dorsey not getting it and/or even caring, or Donald Trump's antics, one fact ties them all together, hence the feature video. Put simply:
Influence doesn't automatically translate to genuine respect, likeability, legacy, or success. And to be successful, yet truly evolved is to be mindful of that. Pay careful attention to Mark Cuban below.
Apart from the thousands of Youtube videos of rich and famous people doing stupid things, I've seen my own fair share of people so entitled they can never be corrected, bothered to say: “please.”
From the rich Mainland Chinese CEO/founder who has never tamed—last I heard—his habit of spitting on restaurant carpets or floors while eating, to 3 former Chinese mentees who were destitute, struggling nobodies when we met only to become “successful” and in revealing character deficiencies, act like neanderthals with a little bit of success, to the Communist Party's well-publicized penchant for demanding others apologize even when it's clear THEY are in the wrong — a form of rudeness well-known to expats — lack of self-awareness is often a character deficiency accentuated by wealth or power. A terrible way to lose people in professional or personal relationships. And precisely what happened with one petulant kid with no manners that I smilingly walked away and blocked all communication from, amidst a business venture they'd sought my help with.
With the idiotic impulsiveness of the 'artists' in the feature video and a “Shut the fuck up, [name here]!” during a minor disagreement wherein they were given numerous uninterrupted opportunity to speak, yet lacked the EQ to extend the courtesy once they felt cornered, I knew all I needed to know about the wisdom of having such a character in my dream team. Their refusal to seize an opportunity to apologize, an even better omen and ladder, — for me! Hence, video point #8 and 7 (in Part 1).There's always room for personal development, process improvement and mutual respect. So if you knowingly decide to work with, or have an intimate relationship of any kind with people content with both lack of curiosity, low Emotional Intelligence and low Listening IQ, you're likely selling your soul and dignity. Even if you're playing the strategic deception game. Indeed as famed leadership and business management consultant Jim Collins aptly put it: “The greatest danger is not failure. The greatest danger is to be successful without understanding WHY you're successful in the first place.” Therein lies the difference between the evolved and uncouth leader. From many corrupt African and other MENA economies to Pakistan, a leader may be propelled to power, sometimes by voters who don't know better—only to discover as economic problems mount—just how almost ungovernable their country is. After all, in the case of Duterte's Philippines for example, foreign aid, anti-Americanism, and endless antics like the “public destruction of contraband luxury vehicles and motorbikes” aren't policies. Not when hiring consummate professionals is ONLY the beginning of solutions. Click image.So while highly evolved leaders may find it unavoidable like everybody else, they still manage to elicit respect while being very deliberate in delicately balancing their endgame against uncivilized business or political leaders they have to deal with. And to be clear, we're not talking about short-term business greed or shareholder value but sustainable and dignified goals bettering humanity.
Evolved leadership entails earnestly seeking to tame one's cognitive biases, and as a consequence, be in the best intellectual and emotional state to effectively lead oneself, as well as others.One of the quickest ways to spot a fool in a leadership position flush with cash, drunk with power with no concern for tomorrow is their disregard and/or disdain both for the law, local as well international conventions and norms, and sustainability. To be evolved, study it below or click above.
In a world of spineless cowards in leadership positions, and narcissists exploiting leadership or social media hashtags to make career moves, get ahead, and dubiously promote their personal brand while conveniently remaining silent on matters of injustice and controversy, lack of conviction ultimately weakens winners who lack introspection. Even if, in the short term, it appears they are successfully protecting their interests. Go find the (China) CCTV 5 version of the Mayweather vs. McGregor fight above. And the Chinese commentator/anchor's interpretation of the respect extended by Mayweather 'to Ireland' is something to the effect of “fake politeness”. Except, evolved leaders and entrepreneurs seek to inoculate themselves against leadership power traps, while uncouth leaders don't bother.Indeed whatever the fake, toxic, psychopathic, or sociopathic person's derived value, good leadership has nothing to do with rallies, TV ratings, abusing people online, or greedy bottom lines and metrics. In an age of Dutertes, Kim Jong-Uns, Trumps, Putins and Xis, the overwhelming, time-tested evidence supported by Robert Greene's book is something like this: The world has seen it all before.
Whether in business, politics or other spheres, true leaders build legacies that outlast them as they adapt to disruptive events. Indeed to be a true leader with conviction and consistency is to embody the Advanced Personal Leadership Principles taught here, comprising my leadership manifesto:
A leader is a stable, tenacious, strategically oriented and highly accountable and disciplined executor, servant and enabler of vision, great ideas, great potential, quality, people and service in a way that ensures sustainability and continued success. (Click for clearer image).
To understand this definition, see in its entirety, the 2012 documentary Jaglavak, Prince of Insects, free on Hulu.
A person is a leader because they readily seize initiative and resourcefully tackle complicated challenges, intimidating, and commonly avoided problems while remaining courageous and wise enough to strategically “quit”, scale down or abort projects & missions.
A person is a leader because as a strategically oriented visionary and lifelong learner who is humble and pragmatic, they bring agility, context, risk management, critical and creative thinking, active listening, excellent communication, networking, human relations and negotiation skills; problem sensitivity, observational skills and an eclectic array of problem-solving skills that include the self-discipline to resist micro-managing and delegate tasks to those more capable.
A person is a leader because they are realists who hone, possess, hire or seek collaboration with those with a preternatural ability to sense and effectively neutralize deception in any power play. Know the laws.
A person is a leader because they absolutely believe in, and consistently demonstrate Respect and Dignity for ALL individuals in the organization or those under their command without Fear, Favoritism, Amnesia, Prejudice, Trickery/Sabotage, Gimmickry/Cowardice and other Manipulative Malice. A person is a leader because their ethical compass, the linchpin of which is fair-mindedness, is crystal clear whatever the context, and importantly, non-negotiable. And therefore, free of corrupt influence. A good leader therefore hires not only for skill but also for attitude so as to maintain an a*shole-free and hence, productive work culture that is more than a breath of fresh air, as is the culture of Google. A person is a leader because whether they are formally in a position of power or not, they foster, advance and passionately execute with good foresight strong ideas that serve the public good, solidify organizational success and cohesion and enhance individual effectiveness in a way that motivates, and is worthy of emulation. And they never feel threatened by another's rise.
A person is a leader because they appreciate that the exemplification of good judgment begins with the courage and self-discipline to do what is right and ethical no matter how unpopular; to protect and serve by refraining from illicit pleasures that involve dehumanizing (e.g., celebrating, encouraging, applauding or tolerating the tearing down of some/one, for the benefit of) others. Indeed, a good leader understands that failure in this regard, diminishes them. A person is a leader because they view their existence as a calling: to serve, deliver and over-deliver value while enabling others (in the tribe, group, team, organization, country or those under their command) to be as great as they humanly can.
A person is a leader because they are so driven by productivity, efficient use of time and resources and powerful results that they are “close enough to relate to others, but far enough ahead to motivate”. And it is for this reason that whatever the context, a good leader is unconcerned with, influenced, or intimidated by the status quo, popularity, so-called “superiors”, survivalism, careerism, political correctness, or a FoMO (fear of missing out) syndrome.
A person is a leader because as a fearless, highly accountable and disciplined disruptor, trendsetter or trailblazer, they DO NOT subscribe to mediocrity because as a fearless, highly accountable and disciplined disruptor, trendsetter or trailblazer, they DO NOT subscribe to mediocrity. Their façade-free, 'just the facts, ma'am' disposition wins and builds trust, itself a rare and hard currency in the marketplace of Machiavellian (office) politics and business competition. As such, they tirelessly endeavor to get the balance between Management and Leadership right by getting Emotional and Social Intelligence right. A person is a leader because he/she is a tireless embodiment of true excellence, tenacity and accountability. And in order to be the change agent they are, they must be prepared to deal with C.R.A.P. This is what makes a leader dare greatly, whatever the odds. And finally...
A person is a leader because their readily verifiable actions, body of work and character speak louder than the biased commendation of friend, self proclamations, or bitter accusation of foes. And they thrive on sacrifice and patience that is rare in an age of inattention, knowing that “inventing and pioneering require the willingness to be misunderstood for long periods of time”.
Proceed or finish below. And for leadership, strategy, or personal consultation, contact me here.