Random Thoughts on Life and Work

August 8, 2013

Avocado Leadership

Filed under: Non-Profit — Darren Mullenix @ 12:55 pm
Tags: , , , ,

A friend and former colleague, Gary Foster, had a profound paragraph in his newsletter this week. I quote it here:

Avocados are extremely easy to bruise. So farmers used to try to carefully arrange them in the box after picking. However, they still experienced costly bruising. Over time, they noticed if avocados were simply set in the box, they would settle themselves in just the right formation as the farmer simply left them alone and walked on. It’s the same with leadership. There’s a time to plan and to act strategically. There’s also a time to just let things settle in as we walk on. Sometimes we bruise things in our efforts fit things in rather than letting them fit.

I have found this to be true in organizations that are struggling with defining structure and processes. It is amazing how many leaders and managers will try to force a solution onto a group that is wrestling with a process. Often the leader is directing a solution through their own filters rather than allowing the group to wrestle with the challenge on their own.

Question – are you forcing a structure or letting your team develop into a working unit naturally?


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