How Driving is Like Leadership…

I arrived off-schedule to our third session in Richmond, VA.  As I was driving, I recalled a similar experience I had while participating in another leadership program.  Here is the story:

In the other program, I was lost while driving and looked-up and saw a huge American flag and it was soaring above a post office!  So, I thought, “Aaa hah, post offices have all addresses and locations (big picture), so if I go in and ask, then I will be steered correctly.  It worked!

Well, I was also at the wrong address for the start of our third session for VALOR, so I had to put in the correct address in my GPS system.  The address listed Henrico County, VA and while driving I saw “Welcome to Goochland County, VA”  I had to fight the urge to go against the GPS and understand, much like the post office, the GPS has addresses and locations (big picture)!  I arrived and all was well.

How is driving like leadership?

  1. Post offices and GPS like leaders “see” the big picture!  Sometimes followers (drivers) can only see immediately in front of themselves.  As leaders, we need to use effective ways to communicate our navigation towards a goal—sounds like the Rule of 3—maybe have at least three ways to communicate the navigation?
  2. Making a last minute turn is sometimes necessary.  In leadership we call it “pivoting.”
  3. If someone is following you in a separate vehicle, do you time the stop lights, so you can both go and stop smoothly or do you fly-off and say, “oh, well…”  The front is not necessarily the best position for a leader.
  4. We can change lanes because we are in control.  What if someone else (leader) asks you to change?
  5. Lastly, you may recall a blog from session 2 about leadership lessons taught to us by the wind…if so, then say, “Thank you” to Chris for his leadership decision!

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