|The mountaintop view is like no other view|
Your organization does important work. No, your organization does vital work. Think of the people you and your organization serve. Now, imagine how those people would be negatively affected if your organization ceased to exist tomorrow. Of course, this would never happen, right? Well, you hope not, but hoping is not a strategy, nor will it take you to places you need to go in order to serve those people who are relying on you. Today, we are looking at the first of thirteen strategic planning principles, perspective before planning.
Perspective before planning. Success is not necessarily indicative of health and the root cause of problems are not always as easy to identify as we would like to think. You may be turning a profit, or your deliverables may be down for the 3rd quarter in a row. Whichever is your reality, the real question is not, “What is happening?”, it’s “Why is it happening?” The answer to that question and so many other vital questions comes when you walk through a disciplined, strategic planning process. That process begins with perspective.
The story goes like this. In the 1980’s, President Regan commission Tom Paterson, founder of the Paterson Center and many of the strategic planning tools and resources we use here at Lead Self Lead Others, to work with Chinese government officials to help open the Chinese economy up to the rest of the world. Now, by this time, Tom had already made a name for himself by effectively helping companies such as RCA and Disney move their corporate vision forward. But as Tom worked with these people from this far Eastern culture, how noticed a stark contrast between their style and that of their Western counterparts, he was so accustomed to working with. These people moved slowly. They circled a problem. They came at it from many different angles. They did not rush suppositions and they certainly did not rush action plans. As Tom would later put it, they just seemed to keep circling the mountain until they arrived at the top.
So, as Tom saw it, we may have a problem here in the Western world. Tom would say that when it comes to problem-solving and working toward success, we tend to have a very linear and very “short-game” mindset. We want to identify the problem and get it solved ASAP. After all, time is money, right? Well, yes, but have you ever considered that you are wasting money by rushing your problem solving and vision building processes? Is it possible that spending more time gaining perspective on where you’ve been and where you are will better inform your decisions on where you’re going? It is possible and is, indeed, very true.
Think of the difference between the view of a given landscape from the top of the mountain vs. the valley floor. Now, think of the view of your organization’s landscape. Have we been making important leadership decisions for our organization with the view from the valley floor? I think many of us have. What if we gained the proper perspective to get to the mountaintop view? I think you can clearly see this would be an absolute game-changer.
As a certified Lead Self Lead Others coach, I have the tools and the experience to help your team gain the proper perspective to make the informed leadership decisions that are so vital to your future success. You must find the truth before it finds you. Why not fill out our and set up a call with me today. I want to help you find that truth.
*Jason is a certified leadership and strategic planning coach with He is also a certified “StratOp” facilitator with the in Fort Collins, Colorado., in Tulsa, Oklahoma.