Ed Rigsbee, CSP, CAE
question that I’d like to pose to you, the corporate executive, “Why
are you really at your job; is it really the money—really—or might
there be a deeper purpose?”
is good and power is alluring, however your legacy is what really matters.
Sometimes upper level executives get so wrapped up in the now that they
forget about the later. Good chance you already have all the money you
need, so why stick around?
motivators might be:
Desire to turn the organization over to family.
Desire to be remembered as a conqueror, inspiring leader, builder of
something bigger than your self, or various other reasons.
Enjoy being engaged in the “game.”
Desire to be a mentor.
Believe they couldn’t run the company without you.
with an Iron Fist
you enjoy being the conqueror, then perhaps you also enjoy being in
control. While being in control is truly an opiate, like other
dependencies, the dependent person degrades over time. In a corporate
environment this generally leads to organizational failure or the leader
becoming a Lord of Lesser Corners—thereby diminishing the Lord’s
organizational downside of this paradigm is twofold; first that of
encouraging the really great talent to find greener pastures elsewhere and
handicapping the talent that does stay. A controlling personality tends to
find it difficult to truly mentor, coach, and nurture arising talent.
reason for this is either the misguided belief that nobody else can do it
as well or the paranoia of letting go of control. Either way, the result
is always a dysfunctional organization.
a Conqueror to Do?
first counsel to an iron fisted executive is, “Protect your legacy!”
You have spent years building this incredible organization; now protect it
from the forces that are intent on tearing it down. Unknowingly, you could
be one of those forces. Sam Walton went back to take control of WalMart,
not because he needed the money, but rather to protect his child. Michael
Dell recently did the same thing.
do you want to be remembered; as the fool that built it and then watched
it being ripped apart? Or would you rather be remembered as the conquering
hero that built it and trained the future generations to make it even
I’m Old and Tired
conquering hero is never old and tired; they have simply misplaced their
passion. You have been so distracted with the static of micromanaging an
organization. Stop playing only defense and get back to your aggressive
game of building—today, it is building your organizational leaders of
to your early passion for building something greater than yourself.
Understand that the good old days are gone; however the good old days were
nothing more than the times in which you had the greatest passion for
building. Kids today are the same as they were when you were young. Sure,
they have kilos of body hardware emerging from all parts of their body,
but what about your long hair in a world of crew cuts? Okay, their bodies
are indelibly marked with various pictures and slogans, but what about
your tie-dyes and bellbottoms?
is not the time to cocoon and reminisce but rather the time for
renaissance. If you look at your organization through the window of your
legacy, you will plug into the juice necessary for you to help your
upcoming levels of executives to carry on your vision. Understand that
they will add to your vision to make it their own. It is this process of
up and coming leaders adding to the overlying vision that allows them the
have the emotional ownership that will deliver to them the same passion
you had in your younger years.
2010-2013 Ed Rigsbee
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an internationally recognized speaker on partnering, Ed
Rigsbee has been fumbling, bumbling, and stumbling his way through the
organizational mazes of for-profits and non-profits for over four decades.
For the last two decades, Ed has been an observer, researcher, and
teacher; helping organizations of all sizes to build successful internal
and external collaborative relationships. Ed travels internationally to
deliver keynote presentations and workshops on profitable alliance
relationships. In addition to serving as the president of Rigsbee Research
Consulting Group, Ed also serves as the executive director of a (501 c 3) public
non-profit charity. Ed has authored three books and over 2,000 articles
helping organizations to take full advantage of their potential. Contact
Ed, get additional (no charge) resources at www.Rigsbee.com.