Leading With Peripheral Vision

by - m on 06/22/2011

Recently, a choreographer was working with a group of young dancers. During rehearsal, she noticed that one particular dancer was out of sync with the others and stopped the practice.

“Do you know the routine?” the choreographer asked.

“Not very well,” the dancer admitted.

“That’s okay,” she said. “We can teach you the dance, but if you try to fake it by watching the others from the corner of your eye, you will always be a step behind and the audience will know.”

The choreographer then took the opportunity to review the routine with the entire troupe.

Couple of lessons here…
  • If you lead a team, be on the lookout for the folks who may not fully understand what you expect from them. Leading a diverse team is not the same as choreographing a musical, but if you find someone who is constantly playing catch-up, reviewing expectations may be in order. 
  • Don’t be a copycat leader. Blithely following the latest leadership trend or mimicking someone else may work in the short term, but if you try to lead with peripheral vision, you will feel out of sync and you will never establish your own leadership style.

– m

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