I selected this week’s video to watch because I’ve been buried in books, videos and articles by Stephen Bungay and David Marquet in preparation for my talk next week at LeanAgile US in Fort Lauderdale. The combination of the two authors is perfect by the way… it gives you the historical context about and tactical implementation suggestions for Intent-Based Leadership (or Directed Opportunism as Bungay calls it.)

If you think you can’t be a good leader if you don’t know all of the technical bits of everyone’s job, you’re mired in 20th century, top-down leadership models. Giving orders helps you achieve (an illusion of) control. But, the downside is that you will only ever be as good as you, personally, can be. You lose all of the collective potential of the group. I’d never say its best not to know anything about what your teams do, but you can lead by direction towards desired outcomes and ignite the brains of the great people that work in your area to come up with the best plan that the collective whole can make.

Intent-Based Leadership is scary as you depend on each other in this model, but the gains are worth the risk — which can be minimized if you’re careful with setting progressive boundaries. Tell me what you think about this video, or give suggestions on other videos to highlight, in the comments area.

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