The Three Rs in Leadership
Destroy the idea that you have to be constantly working or grinding in order to be successful. Embrace the concept, that rest, recovery, reflection are essential parts of the progress towards a successful and happy life. Zach Galifianakis
I read this quote on LinkedIn and it immediately resonated with me. Rest, recovery and reflection. Three Rs.
Why did it resonate? It seems so right and so contemporary. Mindfulness is en vogue and nearly everybody embraces the concept at least in theory. Putting it into practice seems to be another matter.
In my work as a consultant and coach I believe these three Rs are an essential for leading people and for achieving good results. And I believe that good leadership involves being at peace with oneself, taking time to reflect about the matters on hand and so come to wise decisions.
But what I hear from my clients is that most of the time there is no time for reflection or rest. At least it feels like that for them.
As a coach I have the time and peace to reflect – a time that my clients often don’t have.
I can read the many books on the market, listen to podcasts and with the wisdom acquired can listen actively and maybe contribute to an improvement.
When I was working in England back in the 1980s, one of my first bosses was Laurie.
Laurie spent a lot of his time in his office in a very comfortable chair looking up at the ceiling. After having watched him doing “nothing,” as it seemed to me, for a few months, I asked him: “Laurie what are you doing in that chair?” His answer was: “I am thinking.”
And at every department meeting, with every decision Laurie made, it was very clear that Laurie had thought things through. Ever since then I have seen reflection as the most necessary leadership activity and yet today’s leaders and bosses seem to have and take so little time to do exactly that.
We all need time to rest and reflect and recover. Let’s remember that more often.