Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Business and Beautiful Music

Guest

Below’s a guest posting by a Mendel Yano.  This will be part of ongoing posts by guests on TheMarq.  They can be accessed directly under the Guest Topic category. 

Some say that beautiful music can enrich the soul. I believe that business can actually have the same profound effect on a leader as long as it is beautiful as well. I can understand where some may think I have absolutely lost my mind in labeling something like business with a term like beautiful, but let me explain. I believe that when you describe music you listen to the harmony, the tempo, possibly words that have meaning and the overall character of the song or piece. I see beautiful business as being well orchestrated and when done well, is a symphony of different players all working together to execute a final vision.

As an Operations business leader for over 10 years I have had much experience in a diverse amount of challenges and issues. I realized very early in my career that it is vital to always have a vision. Some end result that may be completely unrealistic for the time being but never the less, a fantasy of better things. As the imaginary section lead of an orchestra it is my role to organize all of my players to be in line with the overall business strategy of the firm (conductor). To do so, I believe that several points are vital:

1) We must pick our battles and prioritize the most important challenges. Keep the “I” terms to the side, the focus is on the firm’s objectives. To be a successful leader you need to communicate your goals and align with the firm. What is important to you may not be with the overall strategy.
2) Take a step back, configure your vision and make sure that there are no negative side affects to the other parts of the team. A successfully executed project may just detriment the group. Playing louder or rearranging your section may create an off-balance or other issue to the orchestra.
3) Be overly critical of your plans. Be the devil’s advocate and envision what the absolutely worst thing that could happen to avoid your team’s success. What can be done to avoid catastrophe and possibly let the business down. Do this on your own, a great leader can spot their own weaknesses and compensate without any of the team knowing your concern. The boy scouts mantra is, “Always be prepared.” I will always believe in this.
4) Don’t be afraid to take risks or to think differently from others. I believe that I have so much to learn about business and don’t nearly have all the answers. I would think that others can be this way as well. Just remember to be humble when presenting your ideas, there could be a myriad of things that you did not think of in the formulation. Be open to learn and to teach, you’re a lead for a reason but be cautious of the political toe-stepping.

Hopefully in the end the orchestra will play with great success. As is life there are always going to be challenges but it is how you handle them that makes you the leader you are.