You choose…

Leader, you are not immune to being shaken into a state of tilt. Most leaders, when overwhelmed, react just like a pinball machine – they shutdown. Nothing moves. Remember, 9/11 showed us a whole herd of CEO’s frozen in their chairs just below the impact zones. Fireman, literally, shook them to their senses. They were on full tilt – frozen in place.

Most of you are not having a 9/11 kinda shock to your system, but you are frozen nonetheless. You have a problem performer wrecking havoc while producing results. You have a problem client and are tolerating their unprincipled treatment of your teammates. You have a problem, of some sort or another, and are choosing to look away. You know this requires action from your chair, yet you sit and listen, look, and can’t decide. The infamous no decision is a decision. We have an epidemic of this kinda tilt in every system. Edwin Friedman wrote a book (Failure of Nerve) summarizing his life’s work as Rabbi, coach, and counselor. He saw tilt in synagogue, government, large enterprise and small.

So, leader, preload your response when you sense tilt approaching. There are always warning signals (the best is to pay attention to your breathing). For most of you reading this you need to make more micro decisions to avoid tilt. For a few, you need to walk away from the table and get some fresh air before being so rash. Preload your response, leader. And, it might help to hire a truth teller or two who can sense/smell you bleeding out before the sharks do. You choose. Your choices have consequences, remember…

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