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I, however, have come up with the “31 refutably irrefutable laws of lame leadership.” They are “refutably irrefutable” because you may be able to refute them. But I don’t think so. Either way, I have observed them displayed in real “leaders,” including myself, many times over the years.
So here are the first ten laws that, if implemented, will insure your name in the annals of lame leadership. Laws 11-20 and laws 21-31 will be separate posts.
1. The Law of the Seat of Your Pants – Change the plan regularly. Change it weekly if necessary. Don’t worry about stability of any kind. Tell yourself that the plan is unimportant and that only the vision matters. If anyone suggests that you haven’t devoted enough time to developing a good strategy to achieve the vision …accuse them of not being committed to the vision.
2. The Law of the Stone Tablets – Never change the plan. Even if it’s not working. If it’s not working, keep at it. Do it harder. Do more of it. Tell yourself that eventually it will produce a result that achieves the vision.
3. The Law of the “Company Computer Guy*” – Do everything yourself. Don’t train or develop leaders. When people try to do something and struggle with it at first, tell them to “Move!” and then just do it for them. Never again make the “mistake” of letting anyone else but you do it. (* “Nick Burns” SNL skit reference)
4. The Law of the Lazy Lead– Delegate everything. Really. Everything. Don’t do anything. Remind everyone that you are the leader.
5. The Law of the Murky Micromanage – Delegate everything, then still do everything.
6. The Law of the Scorched Pan – Let problems and conflicts simmer. Don’t deal with them quickly. Allow them to stay in the crock pot until their aroma fills the room. Tell yourself that if you “nip it in the bud,” you’ll miss the bouquet.
7. The Law of Recognition – Have something to prove. Use your organization to prove it and win the acceptance of your peers. See a “win” as earning the respect and admiration of your colleagues. Make sure the “movers and shakers” in your industry know who you are.
8. The Law of Aloofness – Be hard to find. Create some mystery around your persona. Disappear for hours at a time. Tell yourself that by being unavailable to people, they will assume that you are really busy doing very important things.
9. The Law of the Last Minute – Consistently come up with brilliant ideas at the last minute and get your team to implement them for the “sake of the vision.” Call it “doing whatever it takes.” Do this regularly. Do it with dumb ideas also.
10. The Law of the War Room – Make it your goal to “crush the competition” even if you are not in the military. Do not pursue the purpose and vision for your organization. Focus on beating the heck out of others who are trying to do the same kinds of things that you are trying to do.
If you are a leader I know, please don’t freak. I’m not talking about you. Really. It’s not you, it’s me. 🙂