May The Balance Be With You

Pop culture can remind us of important principles of life and work day-to-day pressures push from our consciousness. Movies are an important stream of that pop culture. Many of us as parents, family members or outright fans have seen the recent movies from Star War saga, the most successful film franchise in history. Recently opened “Rogue One” connects the moments before the first movie with “The Force Awakens,” the last episode in the saga that hit theaters a few months ago. What lessons we can we draw from these fun bits of cinematic story telling?

Together the Star Wars movies remind us that balance is necessary and requires ongoing vigilance. Just when you think you finally achieved it, it can slip away and cause problems.

We need to achieve balance among a few importance tensions the world of work. If we are not successful, the result can be the observation made this senior leader:

There isn’t much good strategic execution happening out there. In most cases, leaders can’t operationalize their vision/mission with lasting impact.

In the world of work, we find to create balance among a few important tensions:

• Doing well with doing right
• Being decisive with getting others close to the work to build a plan they believe in
• Driving tasks with building relationships
• Maintaining confidence in the plan with acknowledging mistakes to mobilize others to overcome obstacles

At any single moment, we as leaders may need to give more attention to one side or other of these tensions. Over time, though, we create balance among these tensions or we weaken our ability to achieve strategic priorities.

In our upcoming book, Managing at the Leading Edge, we lay out an approach for achieving lasting impact. We train leader focus on leadership tasks and behavior that achieve the critical balances that drive results that matter.

As we enter the new year, may the balance be with you!

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