Leadership Dots is taking a brief break for the holiday weekend. Enjoy some favorites from the past years.

One of the hardest jobs of a leader is to make the long-term feel real. Most things that benefit the future require change and often sacrifice in the short-term, and, unless the leader can make her team really internalize the benefits, it’s a long slog of resistance.

How to convince someone that…

  • eating that cupcake today could cause diabetes.
  • the extra effort is worth it to open a new market even though today’s sales are fine.
  • wearing an uncomfortable mask could mitigate COVID spread in the community.
  • the new way of work will produce better outcomes in the future, even though it seems counter-intuitive now.
  • the excessive use of disposable plastics is related to climate change which is related to the wildfires in the West.
  • the pain of cost-cutting or retrenchment today will ultimately create a healthier organization.

Following a leader who has a realistic view of sacrifices is wiser than choosing someone who focuses on immediate gains without consideration of the implications. The shorter your time perspective – whether it be for your health, wealth, or livelihood – the more negative impact your actions are likely to have on the long term. Start by thinking about how you want it to be in the future and act accordingly today.

Originally published in modified form on November 9, 2020

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: