"Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.” ~ George Bernard Shaw
I am reminded of a story about Orville and Wilbur Wright. They had seen a bird fly and thought if a bird can fly, then so could man. They set out to prove their theory. Along the way, their father kicked them out of the family and said, “If God meant for man to fly, he would have given him wings.”
Do you think Mr. Wright changed his mind? I am not sure. I don’t know that part of the story. But I do know this: the Wright brothers will be remembered in history forever because they kept pushing toward progress and changed the way man traveled. We now fly all over the world in a day’s time.
Without progress, you and I are doomed. Without progress in our thinking, we are sure to get stuck and left behind as leaders.
I believe all leadership is determined by our way of thinking, and we must be willing to change your minds. If we continue to think about people, problems, and possibilities the same way today as we did last week or the way we were raised to think, we will struggle. The mind is a malleable muscle and can be programmed and reprogrammed if we are willing to make the effort toward conscious change.
In the case of the Wright brothers, if they had bought into the thinking of how they were raised, we may not know them today. Someone else would have been known as the inventor(s) of flight.
Recently, I was in a conversation with a leader who had given up on her team. When she originally took over the team, she said it was her dream job. She had taken the job that she thought was going to be a dream, but she didn’t take the job responsibility to serve and develop people into a dream team. She thought it would be easy.
Dreams are just that…dreams. Most dreams occur while we are asleep. We have to get out of bed to make the dream a reality. Getting out of bed requires us to quit blaming others, quit making excuses for not being able to make it happen, and quit denying that we are completely in control of ourselves.
You must change your thinking. If you are unwilling to change your thinking about leadership and all the things that come along with leadership, then you will be changed, if you know what I mean. The team members don’t lose their position on the team; the coach is always the one who is changed.
What thinking is holding you back?
What did you learn about leadership in the past that is holding you back from leading a great team?
Who do you need to believe in first, you or your team?
“If you can't fly, run. If you can't run, walk. If you can't walk, crawl. But by all means, keep moving.” - Martin Luther King, Jr
Leadership requires us to keep moving, keep growing, and keep changing our minds. I hope you will choose to do this with me.