Tribal Leadership

TLI One: Goals and reflections of week 1

In my last blog post, I talked about my first Tribal Leadership class earlier in the week.  I had time to start my homework and I noticed some interesting changes already.  If you want to know my observations of week one, read on!

One of my first observations happened after the first class.  Some started acting like a little tribe by hooking up on Facebook and in our group on LinkedIn.  You can see some tribal dynamics starting to kick in…  I notice it with the vocabulary in our conversations, the connections we are making, the gifts and insights we are sharing.  I believe we will create bonds that will last after the end of the course.  It is cool to see how fast you can build a small tribe.

I will not discuss all the homework, but I want to talk about the goal I am considering.  As I mentioned in my previous post, we need to set a goal for ourselves to achieve by the end of the class in 4 weeks or so.  Originally, my stated goal was “to become a stronger and better leader”.  I signed up for both courses, so when the trainer asked about a wanted outcome, I considered it my twelve week goal.  I did not realize he was asking my goal for the first course.

The organizers split the Tribal Leadership program in two courses:

  • Intensive One: This course is about personal mastery at stage 3 (I will try my hand at explaining the stages in another post).  The purpose is to learn to use the tools of the program to reach personal goals.
  • Intensive Two: This course teaches how to learn to use the tools to create and stabilize a “we” culture in a group.
    Table 1: Defining Smart Goals

    Table 1: Defining Smart Goals

As many you know, when you set goals for yourself, whether for yearly goals at work or personal goals, you need to make sure the goal is a SMART one.  Table 1 to the right spells out the acronym for you.

I did not know what goal should set for myself.  I was debating whether I needed to set a personal goal or one for a group activity…  Finally, I decided learning the tools is

the true goal of the course, so I selected my goal based on some recordings I wanted to do the last few months but kept putting off for various reasons.

My personal goal for the end of the Tribal Leadership Intensive One class:

  • Increase my personal brand assets by recording a talk for an audio CD and by recording my first podcast for my web site.

This may sound easy, but I faced many challenges over the last six months trying to do this.  Table 2 shows my existing assets and challenges for both recordings.

Table 2: Assets and challenges of my goal

Table 2: Assets and challenges of my goal

My biggest challenge is doing a recording that sounds natural and not scripted.  When I do my talks, I typically wing over 50% of the content based on stories from my work experiences.  My PowerPoint slides are the points I want folks to remember, but I tell stories around them to reinforce them.

Another big challenge is speaking without a live crowd.  Because I need to feed off people, I struggle a bit more through teleconference talks I do because of this.  I need the adrenaline rush speaking in public gives me…  I recently spoke about this to my wife and she graciously told me that she can arrange for an audience of stuffed teddy bears if I REALLY wanted people in front of me.  I am not sure how my daughter would feel about losing her teddy bears for an evening though…

For kicks, let’s look at Table 3 to see if this is a smart goal:

Table 3: Is my goal SMART?

Table 3: Is my goal SMART?

I hope my goal is good…  Stage 3 is the stage where people think: “I am great” with a silent “…and you are not”…  I feel there is delicious irony to celebrate my mastery of Stage 3 with a recording of myself.

Another part of our homework, is to give ourselves a 1-5 grade each day on the following items:  Exercise, Attitude, Rejuvenation and Nutrition because you need to EARN your leadership!  I found it funny when I first read that on the slide, but after a couple of days, I found it is truer than I originally believed.  If you feel tired, how does it affect your attitude or outlook on life?  How different do you feel after a good exercise session?  I find it is a good way to reflect on my day…  Table 4 shows the ratings scale.   Rate yourself before bedtime and see your own patterns.

Table 4: EARN scale ratings

Table 4: EARN scale ratings

Personally, what I noticed is that I am currently struggling with some of them for various reasons but it is also helping me see patterns I need to break and efforts I need to make.  When I grade myself and start thinking: “Why do I have a 2 for rejuvenation?  Ah yes… going to bed at midnight and waking up at 5:30 am…  What can I do differently?”

I believe the overall goal of the tool to make better choices in your day.  I saw a version of the tool where people added other items such as “Love” and “Support”.  This can help you reflect on how loving you are with your spouse and family or how encouraging you are with people around you.  It is an interesting tool, I strongly suggest you try it, all you need is to create an Excel spreadsheet!

Well, that is enough of my ranting for tonight…  Time to start considering some rejuvenation to start my weekend on the right foot!

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