Your words are always under scrutiny. If you are the boss, then other people will listen to your words, interpret them, and find ways to wiggle out of what they mean. General Patton wrote, “You are always on parade.” If you are a leader, especially a leader in an organizational setting, then expect: someone is watching you. Someone is writing down what you have said, and they are looking for ways to contradict you and do what they want.
Since you now understand that your ideas are on parade – and you are too – you may as well make the parade an excellent one. Just imagine that you have a drum corps announcing your message and high-stepping girls with a baton thrown high in the air come out just before you. Everyone’s eyes are on you.
Apply some Polish, Project Manager
Bring out your best ideas. You don’t need many, but they should be good ones. Build your leadership on a few key ideas that point to a better future. Show people why these ideas are good for them – and mean it. Let your ideas be something that people will talk about.
Repeat the tune. Some people won’t get the point, unless you repeat the message at least five times. You are on parade you have an imaginary brass band behind you, and now let the audience hear your tune – one more time! Repetition is a good idea, however, think of variations of the theme. Look for signs that your audience has heard the tune. Bring it back another day just to be sure.
Ask for volunteers. Is your idea impressive? Talk to the people who are listening to you. Do they get what you’re talking about – and if so, can they put it in their words? Look for people who will share your best ideas right next to your. You are going to do your best to help them look brilliant. Find people who are sitting on the fence – the undecideds – and get them to talk to your volunteers. Keep talking about your best ideas. Remember, you’re on parade!
Let the Leadership Parade Commence!
Go on parade with followers (not clowns). Make it a little theatrical! Take your best ideas, pretend that no one has heard them before and let everyone hear the ensemble get revved up! It may not be rocket science, but a little corn can get people friendly with to your ideas. Let your followers take on the role of trapeze artists – talented, looking larger-than-life, with a spotlight on them. You don’t want your followers to look like clowns. You’ll be the ringmaster, so make all your followers look great!
Remember, your ideas are always being evaluated. Don’t be scared, just pretend that it’s a parade, and you are in charge of the music! Bring out your best ideas, and find people who get the point and can keep time with you. You may start out as a solo artist, but your point is, and as if you are on parade. So enjoy!
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You have greatness within you. Let’s have a success conversation! Call me at 602-299-0576 if you want to change for good.