I had just started my gym workout when a guy comes up to me and asked “how many more sets do you have?” My answer of “three of four more” made him pretty grumpy. While he stomped off, I looked around the gym. It’s a BIG gym and was lightly attended given the early hour.
There were literally hundreds of different pieces of equipment that he could have utilized to attack ANY muscle that he wanted to develop. YET he was fixated on ONE piece of equipment.
He was not at all flexible about HOW he could accomplish his objectives.*
As leaders, you and your team need to be flexible about HOW.
There are likely lots of ways to improve aspects of your business (engagement, sales, profits, collaboration, quality, products/services, go-to-market strategies, etc.).
HOW you get there is less important than if the goal was achieved or not.
(This reminds me of the time I was sitting in the office of a SVP who had just hired me to coach one of his leaders. As I walked him through each step of my coaching process, he leaned over and said “I don’t care HOW you do it. Just fix the f***er.” ‘Nuff said.)
WHAT (the objective) is where leaders need to display some contumaciousness.
As one CEO I know puts it: never water down your goals.
Stay stubborn on WHAT. Be flexible on HOW.
That’s how you get results of which you will be proud.
*or he was just a sociopath who happens to work out. I feel unqualified to assess that.