Wow! The little girl’s eyes widened as they sat down to dinner at the fancy restaurant. “Look mom, they’re giving everyone a dish of ice cream BEFORE we eat. Can we do that home too?”
Her parents smiled and tried in vain to explain that this “ice cream” was really sorbet served to adults meant to “clean your mouth” so that you can better taste the food that will be served.
What if there was a sorbet that leaders could savor between meetings to rid yourself of the after-taste of that bitter encounter you just had with a disgruntled employee, an angry customer, a non-performing vendor or a disappointed major stock holder?
Then you could more clearly and cleanly taste the new idea a valued colleague is sharing with you.
Oh what wishful thinking — or is that wistful thinking?
You have to cleanse your proverbial palate yourself.
And even that act of neutralizing the taste you just savored is problematic.
After all we tend to experience the world around us in only what we can see or feel (or taste?) at any one time.
Worse yet, we tend to let that exclusive (read narrow) view linger internally– much like an after-taste– no matter how many external factors change.
Don’t simply grab what is: Grasp what could be.
Are you grabbing blindly and jumping to conclusions much like the blind men in the Hindu parable of the Six Blind Men and an Elephant popularized by poet John Godfrey Saxe?
In that story, each of the blind men feels a different part of the same elephant and concludes that the elephant must really be that part.
One blind man feels the side the of the elephant and says it must be a wall.
Another feels the tusk and says it must be a spear.
One feels the trunk and says it must be a snake.
Another feels the knee and says it must be a tree.
One feels the ear and says it must be a fan.
And another feels the tail and says it must be a rope.
In grabbing the parts, we can never grasp the whole.
To more fully cleanse your lingering tastes and savor your leadership thinking in a new and refreshing way, consider purchasing a 280-page book that is available now on Amazon.com.
It is titled THINKING LIKE A LEADER.
That book on thinking like a leader is the first of three books in The Leadership Mints Series designed to help leaders refresh their feeling for leading with short stories (called Leadership Mints) you can grab ‘n go like a candy mint.