September 15, 2021

Be Good for the World

I’m aggravating and I know it.

My coaching/consulting style: Very annoying and loving big sister or older aunt that you know better than to call unless you really want to deal with the real. People pay me for this!

My son says “nothing annoys you more, Mom, than undeveloped potential”. My brother Ted calls my responses “army recruitment messages”. As in the old ad “Be All You Can Be”.

I won’t shove you around but I won’t let you wallow or remain too comfortable. It stems from my conviction that we are happier stepping into reality and meeting challenges. Using our strengths and gifts – getting some muscle behind our good intentions. If I see that you can and want to, I will bug you until you do. I remember everything you tell me about what’s important to you. And I’ll remind you. With love.

Right now I’m working with a dozen purpose driven leaders – all at different stages of life.*

The highlight of this week was a session yesterday with a young person.

She’s energetic and fired up in all the best ways — a leader and a practitioner to the core. You could drop her on the moon and she’d start building a new world there. She makes my week every time we speak.

Working right at the center and on the ground of COVID response at a major institution, she lives stretched between policy and implementation. Sometimes painfully. So we talked about a practice of capturing what she sees as issues and patterns, identifying emerging themes and problems. How to flip between doing and critical thinking – efficiently. Then taking the next essential step of communicating insights up the chain in a way that allows better decisions. It seems simple. It is – once in place. Also very powerful.

There is often a massive disconnect between those “at the top” and those “on the ground”. We lose lives and waste resources in that gap.**

And everyone in the institution is responsible for closing that gap.

While not everyone has the ability to move smoothly between the ground and the sky view and back again, those rare people who practice that consistently – they are the leaders we need when all hell is breaking loose.

I wrote this to encourage and aggravate you to be all you can be. Go be good for the world.

* I don’t work with careerists. Purpose not ambition needs to be at the core.

** Our institutions are mis-structured in ways that defeat even the best intentions of people working within them. Built for another era, they struggle to evolve. The institution is broken not you. But that’s no excuse for you not to lead. That’s another whole post.

© Angela Blanchard

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