Leadership Development Like Guacamole
Determining the potential in a person for leadership is a lot like trying to figure out how something will taste by sight and smell alone.
Guacamole looks like something you’d find in an old baby diaper. But it’s delicious.
On the other hand, how can something that smells as delicious as vanilla extract taste so awful? (I still remember the day in my childhood when I made this discovery). Durion fruit is apparently the same. Apparently fried crickets are a new delicacy in the west. (They've always been a delicacy in Southeast Asia.)
But a cheesecake both looks and tastes like a heavenly dream. Unless, of course, you don’t like cheesecake. In which case, the potential is disappointing.
Potential can be difficult to determine on the front end.
Anyone can rise to lead, and leadership can come from surprising places. And sometimes the people we think have the greatest potential, never rise to reach it.
The raw material may be there, but when do I know it’s time to begin the process of spending valuable time and resources on development?
I ask these five questions:
- How well do your values align with your actions?
- Do you have a fixed mindset or a growth mindset?
- Are you willing to take risks, or do you play it safe?
- What do you do when you have power?
- What are the things you celebrate?
The answers to these questions tell me what I need to know about current potential.