The Leadership Secret - Knowledge of Theory
The man at the top is usually someone who has been in the habit of going to the bottom of things. – Anonymous.
It’s been quite some time since I last shared a little secret of success at ‘Leadership’ with you, my dear friends! Hence, let me talk about the same with you today. It’s the sine-qua-non of being a good leader to go into the details of any given situation in order to comprehend the same to the T. An average person is not interested in going into the details of a situation. So he argues that he is interested only in practical knowledge. Any effort to educate such a person about “why” and “what” of a situation is ridiculed and labeled as boring theory.
It is true that theory alone is not enough. Practice is necessary. Knowing “how to….” is essential for the execution of a job. However, the practice will not be perfect without theoretical knowledge. Moreover, learning a skill is easier compared to decision-making. Visionary people know ‘why’ something must be done and they only decide ‘what’ needs to be done. Average people feel satisfied with learning a skill and think it to be enough.
Naresh Goyal of Jet Airways doesn’t probably know how to fly an aircraft but he owns the company.
Remember: In order to grow in your career, apart from learning technical skills, you must also have a vision, an analytical mind, decision-making abilities and a definite involvement in the affairs of the organization you belong to. You must be a thinker and you must learn the ‘whys’ and ‘what’s’ too.
The one who knows ‘how’
Shall always have a job,
But the one who knows ‘why’
Will be his BOSS.
You say “I think” ten times a day
Or fifteen times, or twenty
And even more. Well, anyway
You sure repeat it plenty.
But pause and ponder half a wink
And start your brain-cells clinking;
“I think” you say, but do you think
Or only thinking you’re thinking?
How often is the thing you’ve thought
Out of yourself created
And not a dictum you’ve been taught
And simply imitated?
Into a revive you sink
And like an owl you’re blinking,
But do you actually think,
Or only Think you’re thinking?
“I think” you say – and ladle out
Some fusty old opinion
That probably was known about
In Pharaoh’s dominion.
Do new ideas ever slink
Into your cranium’s chinking?
I wonder – do you really think
Or only think you’re thinking?
Traditions, customs, fill your head
And some of them have virtue,
But most of them have long been dead
They fester there and hurt you.
Son, chuck that clutter in the drink,
Wake up – don’t sit there blinking!
Wake up! And then perhaps you’ll think
And not just think you’re thinking!
- Berton Braley
(As quoted in the Forbes Book of Business Quotations)