Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Amazing Lego

I am guessing that everyone reading this blog has played with Lego at some point in their lives, perhaps even very recently. It is a toy that has both imaginative and aesthetic appeal. In this fast, chaotic world where, it often seems, more things go wrong than right, having some bricks & pieces which snap together with satisfying clicks is comforting. And so thus is The Lego Movie, which has a reassuring, funny and (at times) deeply philosophical narrative. At times, the pieces of the story are all over the place but they do eventually come together to form a clever and enjoyable film.

The film is peppered with cinematic allusions and ironic twists which will deserve a second or even third look, one day. I saw it in 3D (by mistake) which worked fine. But apart from Avatar and Gravity, I have yet to see the point of this screen technology. It is a sumptuous roller coaster movie to be enjoyed with or without small children. Go see it!

There are several leadership themes in the film including ‘be all you can be’, ‘have courage’, ‘make plans’ and ‘know and be at ease with yourself’. But the one I will focus upon is ‘design your future’. And I do this very consciously as I am currently sitting opposite the Design Council about to facilitate a day on Applying Design Principles to the Public Services. (You might ask: what are design principles and ‘design thinking’? Here is a good accessible explanation.)

So, how do leaders design their future? The first thing to do is to commit to the view that the future is not already predetermined: futures should be made not suffered. Secondly, you need to decide what future you want. I often refer to what I call the ‘South Pacific School of Business Management’ and its approach to strategic leadership: ‘if you don’t have a dream, how you gonna make that dream come true’. (There is more on this DREAM approach here.)

And thirdly, just like in the movie, you have to know what pieces you have at your disposal. To be a ‘master builder’ (leader), means knowing the capability of the organisation you are leading – not just the current capability but the potential capability as well.

What Lego pieces are in your organisational box?


This is the fifteenth of my new series of blogs about leadership ideas to be found in the movies of our time. You can read here as why I am doing this. Please subscribe to this blog if you want to read more. Thanks. Click the label 'film' to see all the others.

No comments:

Post a Comment