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Visionary: Seeing The Invisible Gorilla

By Peter Jeff
The Leadership Mints Guy

Here’s an idea to help you anticipate and cope with changing conditions. Reading time: 2:01

         The next time you concentrate on that “vision thing” forget looking ahead to get ahead. Look around to be more sound. Think 360 degrees. Not bulls-eye. Pan to plan the future. Turn up the Surround Sound.

        Yet too many leaders yield their attention to that bright shiny object on the ground just ahead.

       And looking down –not out and around – they crash like so many vultures into wind turbines. And everyone else is appalled: how could you crash your organization into such a huge obstacle right in front of you.

      You couldn’t see it, you explain. That huge metallic monster hit in plain sight of everyone else –is in your blind spot.

     You were focusing downward and that led to your downfall. You suffered vulture-itis, a focusing disease that vultures often exhibit.

    Vultures hold their heads at a downward angle when they fly and therefore vultures are blind to everything directly in front of them. And they pay a price for having such precise downward sight to find their prey.  The vultures sometimes end up in a windmill’s blades.

         Leaders have to keep their heads up and swiveling, looking for opportunities and threads all around them not simply directly in front of them.

        The most effective leaders know how vulnerable they are to becoming blind to the obvious in locking on to a vision. They are very aware of The Invisible Gorilla the woman in a gorilla suit who runs across the basketball court, thumps her chest and runs on.

       Yet half of the people viewing this 9-second scenario say they didn’t even see gorilla, according to the Christopher Chabris and Daniel Simons in their book The Invisible Gorilla.

       And thousands of people saw the video but not the gorilla. They were too busy focusing on counting the number of times white-shirted basketball players passed a ball and ignoring the times black-shirted basketball players passed the ball.

      Beware of being blind to your blind spot especially when you are trying to add some sting to your “vision thing.” It’s all a matter of degree. 360 degrees. No bull! Or bulls-eye.

 Today’s ImproveMINT

Pan 360 degrees around a situation to keep your leadership thinking in mint condition.

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