Vision In Leadership
Believing IS Achieving!
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Volume I, March, 2003 Issue
Vision In Leadership – Believing IS
T A B L E O F C O N T E N T S
- L.P.B.-IT! – The Power of
- Meeting for Results
- The Juice Bar
- Exceptional Perception for
- Reader Meter
- Tripled Our Traffic in
- Site News
L.P.B.-IT! – The Power of Vision
”Dissatisfaction and discouragement are not caused by the absence of
things, but the absence of vision.”
This article in for anyone who is currently unsure, unknowing, on-the-fence,
and/or otherwise “searching” for the answer to whether or not he/she can be an
The answer? Quite simply, “Maybe” or “Maybe Not”.
No, we are not trying to be funny or in any way make light of the question.
The simple truth of the matter is this. Whether you think you can be an
effective leader, OR you think you can’t be - You Are Right!
You may be saying, “What the heck are you talking about?” But just take a
moment and think about the original question.
”Can I be an effective leader?”
We challenge you to ask this question again, but in a slightly different way.
Rather than asking, “Can I …?” – Instead ask:
”WILL I be an effective leader?”
Asking the question this way, makes something very clear to the person asking
the question. That “something” is that each of us has a choice to make as to
what we want to be in any given moment. THE CHOICE IS OURS.
Vision in Leadership is very much about making choices. Leaders make choices
everyday that affect many other people. Because of the responsibility and
accountability that comes with leadership, a good leader makes choices based on
strong principles and beliefs.
Choosing a specific path or vision for your team or your company, is done most
effectively by following the L.P.B.-It method.
The title of this article is “L.P.B.-IT! – The Power of Vision”. L.P.B. stands
for the following:
LEAVE IT! - When faced with an important decision, it is sometimes easy
to focus in on all the reasons why we shouldn’t do something versus why we
should, or why perhaps it won’t work versus why it will.
Leave It – makes the point that a strong leader routinely makes the choice to
“leave” negative thinking behind. There are plenty of nay-sayers who accomplish
little or nothing. YOU CAN’T AFFORD TO BE ONE OF THEM.
On a regular basis, step at least “1 inch” outside your comfort zone. That is
where all the action is!
In fact, everything you have ever wanted and have thus far been unable to
obtain, is more than likely located “outside” this comfort zone.
To be a successful leader, you must be “uncomfortably successful”. Make this
Perceive It! - A strong leader’s perception is truly a powerful tool.
Effective leaders perceive things differently in most cases from others.
For instance, go anywhere in Smalltown, USA or Ruralville, America where
Walmart, Costco, Home Depot or some other huge bulk outlet store has just come
Local retailers in these little towns have nightmares about this scenario
playing out in their own backyards. The thought of having to compete against
Goliath is extremely frightening.
No one would argue the fact that these local retailers have a right to be
concerned. But, if our L.P.B.-It method really works, shouldn’t we “leave”
these negative thoughts aside? Answer: YES!
The truth of the matter is that no amount of fear is going to change the minds
of large chain executives. They will either make the decision to open, or they
won’t. If they do choose to expand to these markets, you should know that they
are well aware of your fears. In fact, these executives are counting on this
Instead of “perceiving” the bulk stores as the enemy. Why not “perceive” them
as an opportunity? YOUR - Ace In The Hole!
Opportunity may come in many forms, but we must seize the moment and perceive
the opportunity in order to avoid becoming the victim of circumstance.
Examples of potential opportunities from the above scenario:
- Traffic patterns may change so perhaps a relocation of your business may
be great for future growth.
- Land values may rise in certain areas. Buying now and selling later may be
a wise investment for an early retirement.
- Increased competition typically increases quality for the consumer. More
choices make service and quality more important. Price is not always the
deciding factor. Know what your customers value most and deliver.
- Identify a niche for positioning your current business, or open a new
business that can take advantage of the increased traffic and that can
compliment the incoming bulk store.
- If you aren’t willing to compete, perhaps your expertise would be highly
valued as a manager or supervisor at the new bulk store. Potential for stock
options, increased benefits, new challenges, etc.
The fact is, we could go on and on about possible opportunities in virtually any
given situation. It’s all based on a person's perception of any given event.
Perceiving things positively by no means ensures success, but understand this; perceiving things negatively virtually guarantees failure.
Again, it’s a choice, make yours now!
Believe It! - You may have heard the term “Believing is Achieving”.
This is a very simple but powerful phrase that has been proven over and over
again. If you think about it, nothing great has ever been achieved until
someone has finally comes along with the belief that it should be - and WILL be
For instance, man first stepped foot on the moon because of a President who
firmly believed that we could achieve what many considered impossible.
President Kennedy addressed our nation by saying words to the effect, “some look
to the moon and ask why, I look to the moon and ask why not.”
Isn’t it fair to say that President Kennedy’s belief of what could be achieved
was very different than the belief of most people? If you agree, you might also
concede that it was his strong “belief” that inspired a nation to make the
impossible - possible.
In his recent book “Leadership Secrets of Colin Powell” by Oren Harari, he
“Perpetual Optimism is a Force Multiplier. The ripple effect of a
leader’s enthusiasm and optimism is awesome. So is the impact of cynicism and
The same point can be made for a leader’s strong belief. The power of one’s
belief and ability to communicate his/her belief to influence others IS awesome.
In conclusion, the L.P.B.-It method is all about making the appropriate choices in order
to carry out your vision for success. Vision = Choice Cubed, if you
- CHOOSE to leave the self-doubt and “can’t-do” garbage behind you
in order to allow new worlds and new beginnings in.
- CHOOSE to see opportunity instead of catastrophy.
- CHOOSE to believe in the impossible in order to experience all that IS possible.
See you in the next section!
Meeting for Results
At your next staff meeting lead your team through the following exercise.
This exercise is focused on getting people to perceive things positively. The exercise goes like this:
Make the point to your team that they have the power to perceive virtually all
things either from a positive or negative perspective. Lead a discussion asking
for attendees to offer up negative circumstances resulting from the recent tragedy involving the Space Shuttle Columbia. (Creating this "list of negatives" will come easily for the participants given the nature of the disaster. For example: The loss of life, the
potential effects for radiation on the ground, the devastating blow to the space
program, the children and families effected by the loss of loved ones, etc.)
Make the list no longer than 8-10 items in the interest of time.
Next, ask the group to come up with a list of positive outcomes from this
experience. (This will be harder for the group because it is difficult to voice
optimism when talking about personal tragedy. You can offer up a few of your own ideas
to get people started thinking from a different point of view.
For instance some positive outcomes are:
- The space program will learn
from this disaster and become even safer for future flights – thus saving
- The nation came together from the crisis which is good for the solidarity of
- The family members will remember their deceased as American Heroes and
throughout history their family will take pride in his/her commitment to space
- The focus on the tragedy from the national media will inspire a new
generation of space enthusiasts. Perhaps a child who will become the greatest
space explorer of all time.
Now challenge your team to come up with 5 additional positive outcomes. You
will be surprised now by their creativity and renewed vision for what is
Lastly, go through the exact same exercise. This time however, choose the
following topic appropriate to your own business. “Revising our production goals UP by an additional 15%.”
After going through the negatives first (limit the list to 5 items), then go
through the positives, and allow your team to have a lengthy discussion on HOW
this 15% production increase will be achieved. In effect, let them create a
mini action plan.
Once the group has agreed on how to increase the production by 15% you can ever-
so-gently inform them that the goals did NOT just go up by 15%. BUT, now that
we have a plan, don’t you think we should use it?
Have fun with this exercise! It shows people you are a leader with vision and
that you understand the power of perception and belief.
Hopefully, it will also show your team that you have a warped sense of humor!
This isn’t necessarily a bad thing – show them it’s ok to have fun while
The Juice Bar
Exceptional Perception for Success!
”Vision is the art of seeing the invisible.”
Recently we heard the following true story. We were so inspired by a simple
comment made by a physically challenged young man we simply had to share this
with our readers.
We think you will agree that this short story fully supports the idea that
vision is a truly powerful force. We begin here.
A young man by the name of David lost both legs when he was a very young child
in a farming accident.
David grew up loved and supported by his family, including three brothers and
two sisters - who were all quite athletically inclined.
Throughout his upbringing David attended all sorts of athletic events. Every
weekend it seemed, the family attended various tournaments – basketball,
baseball, volleyball, you name it. The activities were endless.
Living in a small town, David was not able to participate in athletic events
specifically for physically challenged individuals. So he spent a lot of his
time helping out at practices, keeping score, doing whatever he could to support
and be part of the team.
David had a wonderful perspective on life. He had goals for his future and he
fully intended on becoming a fully functioning member of society. Throughout
his life he dreamed of one day becoming a great basketball player.
David’s mother marveled as his optimism, but was never so astounded as she was
one day when she drove David down to the local post office.
Earlier in the day, David’s mother informed him that they needed to go down to
sign up for Selective Service. David had just recently turned 18.
Once they arrived at the post office, David wheeled himself up to the counter,
thought for a second, and then once again asked his mother what he was signing
up for. She re-stated that they needed to sign him up for Selective Service.
Upon seeing the look on David’s face she realized he had no idea what Selective
Service was. She asked David, “Do you know what the Selective Service is?”
David said he did not.
She smiled nicely, and said, “Despite the fact that you have some physical
limitations, we are signing you up for the draft.”
David’s eyes grew wide! His smile ran from ear to ear!
He could barely mutter the words, but at last he said,“WOW, WHAT TEAM DO YOU THINK WILL PICK
Now that, my friend – is VISION.
"The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two
opposed ideas in the mind at the same time, and still retain the ability to
function. One should, for example, be able to see that things are hopeless and
yet be determined to make them otherwise."
— F. Scott
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