Books & Audio
- NO YELLING: The 9 Secrets of Marine Corps Leadership You Must Know to Win in Business By Wally Adamchik
- Conversations On Success, Vol. 2 By Les Brown, Nido Qubein, Jim Kouzes
- Audio CD of World of Concrete 2007 No Yelling presentation By Wally Adamchik
- The Real Capital Currency
- And Now For Something Completely Different…
- Top 13 Things to Look For in Your New Online Training Platform
- Supervision Required
- Are you going nowhere fast? Time to get out of the rut (and into the ocean!)
- Are You a Righty or a Lefty?
- No Slugs Allowed
- These Guys Are Good
- Leading the minority majority
- The Workaround
- Be Offensive
- Show ‘Em You’ve Got the Right Stuff
- The Recession in Your Head
- Fabricating a Career
- Bowl-Eligible: A New Level of Mediocrity
- What If? Three Questions You Must Answer Today to Protect Your Company in the Economy Tomorrow
- Manage Them Out the Door
- Operations Support Staff
- The Rumor Mill Can Grind You Up
- The Easier Buttons
- The best place to find new employees
- Mentors and Mentees
- Nutrition and Decision Making
- Adamchik's Laws of Leadership
- Talking Points For Leaders
- Full Contact Leadership
- The Road Signs of Leadership
- 24/7 Customer Centric
- Get Bad At What You Do!
- The Heroic Last Stand (or not)
- There are NO leadership secrets
- Do Values have value?
- Rules of Engagement; Do your gears mesh?
- Linear vs Non-linear
- ROL - Return on Leadership
- Shamu and You
- Are you making or missing your blocks?
- What Happens In Vegas...
- The Real Truth About ROI
- A Night at Your Office
- Read this if you have children
- Do They Think We Are Stupid?
- The Policy Made Me Do It
Learning Resources: Free Articles
Are you going nowhere fast? Time to get out of the rut (and into the ocean!)
I grew up doing a lot of skiing. I can ski on most any mountain on most any slope (although there are some at Whistler I don’t want to see again!) I have never done scuba. I may be an expert skier but I am a novice diver. We (the family) are going to learn to dive--and there are life and leadership lessons here.
When we decided to take our first ski vacation, it was easy for me. I knew the ropes. I could research where we wanted to go, the conditions and type of mountain. I could easily lend support on picking out gear, putting it on, and getting to the lesson area. I was totally confident in my ability to function on skis and in my ability to support my family. (With superior competence, actually it is expertise in this case, isn’t that what the husband/father/leader is supposed to do?) It wasn’t a stretch for me to take the family skiing. Four years later, with all family members proficient in skiing, it is time to take on something else.
I have always wanted to scuba dive. I figure now would be a great time for us to certify as a family and take a dive vacation together. The problem is… I don’t even know what I don’t know! I am consciously incompetent. In skiing, I am unconsciously competent. Most people who have been doing something for a long time reach that level. In fact, you enjoy this level in many facets of your life.
Wikipedia tells us this was initially described as the “Four Stages for Learning Any New Skill.” The theory was developed by Neal Burch with Gordon Training International in the 1970s. (It has since been frequently attributed to psychologist Abraham Maslow, although the model does not appear in his major works.) The Four Stages of Learning provides a model for internalizing new information. It suggests that individuals are initially unaware of how little they know, that is to say they are unconscious of their incompetence. As they recognize their incompetence, they consciously acquire a skill. They then consciously use that skill. Eventually, the skill can be done without consciously being thought through, and the individual is said to have unconscious competence.
There are some who argue for a fifth level centering on complacency, in which the individual loses their edge and excellence in that skill. In executive coaching situations, we often start in level one: the “coachee” doesn’t know they have a problem, or in level five: the “coachee” has failed to adapt and develop, causing problems to emerge. Great strides are made in coaching sessions when we admit we don’t know and allow alternative solutions in.
Back to diving. I have some anxiety about the trip. I want it to go well, of course, but I also know I am not in as strong a position to lend support and assistance once we are on-site. Yes, we will all be certified. But beyond that, I will have no more experience under the water than the rest of my family--unlike on our ski trips when they all took lessons and I was able to ski, sometimes backwards, with them down whichever slopes they could handle.
I can research resorts and read Trip Advisor (great site) but cannot read between the lines on reviews for dive resorts as I well as I can for ski resorts. The easy fix would be to go skiing again, or maybe choose a less labor-intensive option, like a cruise. Then again, the easiest options are rarely the best options. Diving will challenge us all to develop a new skill and bring the opportunity to travel to new places and experience new things. In doing so, we will grow as individuals, and maybe as a family. Isn’t that what life is all about?
Noted Harvard academic John Kotter has written that leadership is about change for better results. Yet, in the face of uncertainty or anxiety, it is easy to want to go with what seems “safer,” more familiar. But taking the consistent and predictable path, while comfortable, can wear it down until it becomes a rut. In ruts, the human spirit can waste away and eventually even die. Leaders lead people out of or away from ruts.
I am looking forward to the dive experience. I hope this will be the first of many dive vacations. I am certain I will learn, and be changed for the better, by the experience. It may not be the easy path, but it’s certainly the better one. What paths are you taking (or not taking), and what implications do they have for you? I will update after vacation!
Wally Adamchik is President of FireStarter Speaking and Consulting. Visit the website at www.beaFireStarter.com. He can be reached at 919-673-9499 or wally@beaFireStarter.com.
"Thank you again for presenting at our annual meeting in Las Vegas. We have heard many very favorable comments about your program and look forward to working with you next year."
Ceilings and Interior Construction Systems Construction Association
Who is Wally Adamchik and why should you trust him with your leaders?
We work with you to create a plan of how to get where your company needs to be. No canned solutions, only proven paths to success.
Through Keynotes, Workshops and Personal Coaching, we give you the tools and knowledge to build leadership in your organization.
Look beneath the Surface BEFORE Making a Hiring or promotion Decision
Books, Audio CD's and Free Articles to inform and inspire you on the subject of leadership