If you want to create something new, your first task is to inspire yourself and other people to want to make it happen.
Or as the poet and pilot Antoine de Saint Exupéry put it:
“If you want to build a ship, don’t drum up people to collect wood and don’t assign them tasks and work, but rather teach them to long for the endless immensity of the sea.”
The more successful you are at doing this, the more inspired people will be to join you, stick with you, and deliver more enthusiastic results.
And the way that you create this inspiration is with your own unique combination of seven basic building blocks:
- A clear definition of the problem
- A clear definition of the future you want to create
- Clearly defined first steps to get there
- Articulated in a way that is meaningful for your audience
- Expressed authentically by you
- Explaining why your vision matters (the principles, ideals, or values it upholds) and
- And asking your audience to make a decision: Are you with me?
The more you combine these elements in a way that makes your audience long for your project to succeed, the less you’ll need to assign tasks or ‘drum up people to collect wood’ — because they’ll do all that for themselves.
And the same applies just as much to yourself. The more you find what you are longing for, the less you’ll need to assign any ‘tasks’ and ‘work’, and the more you’ll simply do whatever needs to be done.
This is another step to becoming antifragile in a time of change.
Are you and the people around you longing for the project you are working on to succeed? What would happen if you (and they) were?
Adapted from Inner Leadership: a framework and tools for building inspiration in times of change.
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(And remember: you don’t learn to swim by reading about swimming, you also need to practice.)