Sunday, January 13, 2008

10 Steps to inspiring transformation

New Hampshire results on the Democratic nomination confounded the pollsters, pundits and the media but it was a symptom of what those of us who use the lens of complexity recognise as inevitable expression of self organisation . There are many analysis into how people who are paid to gaze into crystal balls got it so wrong and Senator Clinton won. Is it the 'iron my shirt' placards, the tears to stop the 'country falling back', the Barack Fairy tale remarks or is it the uncle from Kenya coming out of the woodwork. Never mind like most leadership educators i fancy myself an adviser to a great political leader. In this case i choose Senator Obama for many reasons that have been shared before. He only stands a chance if he can do the following things:

1) Connect back with the possibility of a United States of America which whimsically we glimpsed after the Iowa result. The lesson of Iowa is that everybody likes a dream coming true they just worry at what price and whether it will come true. In Iowa I suspect there are many children of Jane Elliot who had gone through the blue eye, brown eye experiment. They were open to possibility connect with that element.

2) Remember you got 37% in New Hampshire mostly white people so the dream is not dead it is living and it will take time to become fully owned by everyone . Concentrate on celebrating the fact that people have spoken and their message is that you need to close the deal and define the possibility of the change you can help them create in more concrete terms. remember perception is reality.

3) Do not buy the sense of unfairness and injustice that you might feel from the Bill Clinton kid remark or the racial undertone of some of the different comments even Hillarys MLK comment. They are distraction and very dangerous one. Do not let your so called friends suck you into any sense of racial polarisation. Ignore Donna Brazille and i forget her name the publisher of Ms magazine . this is not about what sets people apart but what brings them together. even if it is racism the only answer is excellence. Step up your game some more gears by having specific changes anytime you talk. For example a foreign policy that puts understanding as a pre condition to assertive or even aggressive behaviour.

4) Draw a distinction between your candidacy which is about transformation rather than about improving existing transactions.

5) Remind people that the Presidency is about leadership primarily not about management. It means that inspiration to get people to move towards another level of outcomes and the judgement to choose key people as well as the capacity to constantly improve are the key here.

6) For those who insist on details in every respect explain that in the times we are in that Alan Greenspan calls 'the age of turbulence ' the key is to be adaptive and flexible to evolve solutions to the unpredictable and unforeseeable.

7) Remind them that they have to find solutions for todays out of the mindset of tomorrow not from the same orientation with which it was created.

8) Go out on a limb and define yourself as you have always done by not just talking about your strengths but also your weaknesses and what you will do to manage them.

9) Remind people that this is about them not about you as to whether they want to be reduced to what they fear or be bold for what they desire.

10) Celebrate the process and ignore the win /loss equations from the pundits that is down to the people guess all you can do is your best. Eventually people get the President they deserve.

Do try to live in the moment and enjoy

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