Seth Godin on Leadership

This is part of the Seth Godin on Story wiki to mark the 1,000th episode of the SMB podcast. Check out my chat with Seth or dive in below. The comments, highlights and affiliate links are mine.

As I’ve said elsewhere, the brands, businesses and leaders we love, tell better stories.

Turns out I probably got that from Seth … years ago.

People don’t believe what you tell them. They rarely believe what you show them. They often believe what their friends tell them. They always believe what they tell themselves. What leaders do: they give people stories they can tell themselves. Stories about the future and about change.

Tribes (2008) – Seth Godin

The apocryphal story about Christopher Columbus is that after he returned from a voyage, the naysayers in the elite were giving him a hard time about his trip, pointing out that if he hadn’t done it, well, someone else would have done it anyway. It was inevitable, no big deal.

According to a book written in 1565, this is how he dealt with his critics: Columbus did not respond to these words but asked for a whole egg to be brought to him. He placed it on the table and said: “My lords, I will lay a wager with any of you that you are unable to make this egg stand on its end like I will do without any kind of help or aid.” They all tried without success and when the egg returned to Columbus, he tapped it gently on the table breaking it slightly and, with this, the egg stood on its end. All those present were confounded and understood what he meant: that once the feat has been done, anyone knows how to do it. Quit chasing. It’s easy, it’s ineffective, and you’re better than that.

The Icarus Deception: How High Will You Fly? (2012) – Seth Godin

INITIATIVE is the privilege of picking yourself. You’re not given initiative, you take it. Pick yourself. If you’re still not getting what you want, it may be because you’re not making good enough art, often enough.

V Is for Vulnerable: Life Outside the Comfort Zone (2012) – Seth Godin

See Also:

On ArtOn Authenticity | On AverageOn Challenging YourselfOn Ideaviriuses |  On Pricing | On Storytelling | On Your Story

 


 

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