Friday, July 3, 2009

Failing Leadership.....?

As a young child I was small and was often one of the last boys chosen in the neighborhood pickup games. This fact may be at the root of why I have spent most of my life in positions of leadership. From High School on there is a pattern of being at the forefront. Multiple team captains, club presidencies, jury foreman (twice), student governments, retail management, and now running an 18 million dollar a year company. I guess I loved to play the game a lot and the only way to be sure your in it, is to start it.

I've always felt a bit shy in social situations and I would (and do) compensate by pretending to be confident. This gives people the impression that I AM confident, so they step aside and put me in charge. Then I'm forced to find the courage to follow through. Does that make sense?

The most important way to fool people into thinking you have it all together is using body language. Shake hands firmly and enthusiastically, don't cross your arms or put your hands in your pockets. Stand squarely on two feet with shoulders back and chin up. Smile confidently even if your knees are knocking. The next thing you know you've been elected. (Lots of opportunity for Bush jokes here, but I must resist).

My point here is that as I feel more frail and less physically able to maintain the image, I fear someone is going to find me out. I'm actually the little kid in right field that was the last one picked. They all just thought I owned the team.


When a resolute young fellow steps up to the great bully, the world, and takes him boldly by the beard, he is often surprised to find it comes off in his hand, and that it was only tied on to scare away the timid adventurers.
R.W. Emerson



  1. Yes, it does make a lot of sense. This is the way clever guys become popular and successful. I know a few guys who do this too. It's an excellent strategy.

  2. I love this one. I can't relate at all to the owning the team thing. I have never been a good actor, but I understand weakness exposed, and I was also always the last one picked. (somethings never change!)

    The good thing about right field is this...most players aren't skilled enough to know how to the direct the ball out there. You can relax, I don't think your cover is totally blown yet!


  3. I just found your blog, read quite a bit of it and want to give you a big hug.

  4. L.Q.,
    I never felt clever, I was just coping the best way I knew how.

    Here's hoping!

    I've lurked your site a few times (not stalked) and found it very entertaining. I loved to cook but now find slicing a tomato a challenge. It killed me (in a funny ha-ha way) to watch my son-n-law butcher (er carve) the Thanksgiving turkey. It's an art and he's a bad house painter. :)


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