Friday, November 17, 2017

Follow The Yellow Brick Road

While preparing our house for our family Thanksgiving feast, I found myself tidying up our DVD collection when I came across one of my all-time favorites; The Wizard of Oz. I can’t begin to count the times I have watched this classic on TV in black and white, or going to Grampa's to watch it on his “color” TV. As an adult, I bought my first VHS player/recorder along with only one movie, and now I find myself rather reflective as I stare at the Blu-ray + DVD + Digital Copy 75th Anniversary Special Edition.


As fond memories raced through my head I found myself beginning to draw parallelisms between the main characters and fundamental leadership characteristics. Consider:


Needing a Vision - Dorothy was certainly given a path to follow and a vision for where she needed to go. In spite of various twists and turns along the way, she never lost her vision and helped others find their path along the way.


Needing a Brain - Although most leaders are intellectual, it’s their wisdom that usually sets them apart. Intelligence is knowing a tomato is a fruit...wisdom is knowing not to put tomatoes in a fruit salad…


Needing a Heart - William W. George an American businessman and academic, professor of Management Practice, and a Henry B. Arthur Fellow of Ethics at Harvard Business School, weighed in on having heart in a recent interview. “You might have a high IQ, but if you do not have an emotional intelligence, then you are not going to be successful. Qualities like passion, compassion, empathy and courage — those are all matters of the heart, and we can’t teach those in business school classrooms.” Which leads us to…


Needing Courage - Let’s be honest..it takes courage to put your dreams into ACTION. Without courage you can’t make a difference. Without courage you can’t have the right conversations that lead to change. Without courage you won’t even get off the starting block as a leader. But it’s how you show courage that’s the important point here. Winston Churchill said “Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen.”


Wherever your “yellow brick road” takes you remember to have a clear vision, the wisdom to know when to regroup, the heart to help others along the way, and the courage to do and say what needs to be said and done…


Be good to yourself...