The Rule of the Needle
Failing is easy – chase urgencies and neglect priorities.
Success is found by passionately
doing what matters most.
The thing that matters most for leaders
is building other leaders.
If you don’t develop others, you’ll never reach extraordinary.
- Avoid Model T’s. Before driving a Model T you crank it to get it started. If you have to convince, cajole, or constantly crank someone to get them going, that’s all you’ll ever do. You’ll crank them – they’ll sputter – you’ll crank them again the next time. Failing is easy; just spend your time cranking.
- Passion first. Find the most passionate people available and throw gas on their fire.
- Potential second. Potential seduces leaders who are dedicated to developing leaders. You see someone with talent, skills, and/or education and you start drooling like a dog at a dish. Potential apart from passion is constant frustration and ultimate disappointment.
- Respect matters. The more they respect you the more impact you’ll have.
- Practice trumps theory. Talking is useful but action matters most. Go with people prone to act.
- The sandbox principle. How well do they play with others?
The rule of the needle:
When it comes to people, there’s never perfect clarity regarding who to coach, mentor, and/or teach.
Ask yourself, “Are they passionate?” If the needle tips to yes, ask, “Do they have potential in this area?” If the answer is yes, ask, “Are they prone to action?” etc.
The needle determines what or who matters most. It doesn’t point to perfection or create certainty. Waiting for certainty and perfection wastes time and stalls progress. The needle indicates likelihood of success.
How do you determine what matters most?
How do you identify people you plan to develop?