Charlene Li's Open Leadership

After reading the first chapter of Charlene Li's Open Leadership: How Social Technology Can Change the Way You Lead," I quickly realized there are going to be numerous situations where I get the urge to reference something she's written. So rather than flood @craigpladson with random quotes as I progress through the book, I figured I'd take a few minutes after each chapter to highlight a few inspirational quotes to encourage you to think differently.

Chapter One 

1) Via Michael Slaby, Chief Technology Officer of the Obama campaign: "If you do a good job of teaching your values and mission to the people at the bottom of your organization, then once you give them control, they will do the right things with it." This reminded me once again of the importance of leadership guiding an organization's efforts to clearly articulate where they are and where they're headed. Check out my post "Don't Iterate from the Status Quo" for more on this.

2) Via Robert Greenleaf in "The Servant As Leader" essay in 1970, who referenced executives as "the humble stewards of the corporation, not the almighty heads of them." Love the simplicity of this statement and the tone it exudes about how organizations should be less reliant on top-heavy management and more reliant on employee and customer-led teams.

3) Charlene Li's definition of open leadership :: "having the confidence and humility to give up the need to be in control while inspiring commitment from people to accomplish goals." Leaders truly are only as good as who they surround themselves with and inspiring those who work for them is absolutely the most important part of their job.

And my favorite quote of the first chapter ...

4) "The natural outgrowth of curiosity is humility, which gives you the intellectual integrity to acknowledge that you still have a lot to learn, and also to admit when you are wrong." I've always been a huge proponent of curious minds and believe curiosity, combined with passion, are two essential ingredients to success - especially in the interactive marketing world. In any job for that matter. But I really like how Charlene brought in the transition from being curious to being humble. And that it indicates intellectual integrity, not weakness. Nobody knows everything about everything. Especially about leadership and social technologies.