5. Aristotle Onassis on leadership
“One of the tests of leadership is the ability to recognize a problem before it becomes an emergency.” – Aristotle Onassis
The key to this, in my opinion, is reflection. Sit down regularly, take clear stock of your own life and the things you’re responsible for in life, and ask yourself honestly whether those things are headed in the direction that you want. Are there any issues that could blow up?
One of the biggest themes in my life over the past few years has been to establish patterns of reflection and meditation. I’ve found that the more I reflect on the things I learn and observe, the things I’ve done in the past in terms of what worked and what didn’t, and the things I know are to come, the better equipped I seem to be in terms of handling life in a successful manner.
I might see major mistakes without much reflection, but I don’t see minor ones unless I reflect. I might see major problems without much reflection, but I don’t see minor ones that could easily grow into major ones. I might see big things coming up in the future without much reflection, but I don’t consider how to deal with them or see smaller ones coming up without it.
I think the concept of “leading by walking around” is important here. Knowing what your team is worried about or unexpectedly spending time on key. If you’ve a geographically distributed team, it’s harder．A daily scrum of quick hits, with follow up, can help.