Monday, December 1, 2014

Quote-A-Day: Day 336

Steering the ship means nothing if the ship isn’t actually going anywhere. #QuoteADay #Day336 #edchat #satchat #NYedchat #ASCDL2L

Two things happened yesterday that made me think of this quote.

First Thing - We have this ride-on shopping cart at home that my youngest daughter loves.  She’s just tall enough to climb into the seat, but her legs aren’t yet strong enough to move the cart anywhere.  So, she basically climbs up (often facing the wrong way in the cart at first), and turns the wheel of the cart back and forth, maybe hoping it goes somewhere, maybe hoping it doesn’t.  Then she gives up, and calls for one of us to push her. 

Second Thing – I read an interesting “Corner Office” in the New York Times profiling Roger Ferguson, the CEO of TIAA-CREF that spoke to the importance of remembering that leadership rarely comes from one person (you can find the piece here).

There’s some learning to be had here.  First, a leader can hope to steer an organization in a certain way, but it is unlikely that he or she will be able to get the organization to the desired destination alone.  Second, the minute we open ourselves to receiving assistance is also the moment when we have to realize that purely by collaborating with others, our destination, and how we get there, will likely be at least a little bit different.

The “price” of collaboration is that things can never be “your way.” 

And the benefit of collaboration is that things will never be “just” your way.

Leaders may be the one’s steering the ship (sometimes, anyway), but it is the whole community who can actually get the ship to get to where it needs (or wants) to go.

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