A Bit of Optimism
Each week I highlight important issues in 7 topical areas. You should know they impact me as well. This week, under “Growing Leaders,” I reference good podcasts for leaders to listen to. Since I already follow Simon Sinek, it’s my pleasure to share one of my favorites from him today.
Recently Sinek interviewed Matthew Barzun, a fascinating man who sees the world differently – unlike anyone else. Early on he saw the power of internet, small donations in politics… he has been Ambassador to Great Britain and Sweden… and author of The Power of Giving Away Power. He is the master of deferring to others.
He’s been a witness to this distinct kind of leadership and watched how people give away power. In 2006, for example, then-Senator Obama visited Louisville, KY, for a big rally. In a spare hour afterwards, he sat down with room full of Republicans from the state. As Barzun tells it, “I figured he’d want to catch up on work… instead he listened, asked questions, sought to know. He lit up the room through his lighting up of everyone else – by giving away power.”
Barzun goes on to talk about leadership. To his mind, top-down, “do as I say” leadership doesn’t work. Today, the buzz word instead is “bottom up.” Yet, in both cases we still have a highly structured triangle of power. If you really want to change how leadership looks and sounds to drive innovation and trust, Barzun proposes we consider the alternative, another kind of order: the “constellation.” In this model we each have our own autonomy; we choose to connect to one another to create interesting patterns. Pyramid thinking is more natural, but this alternative can drive real creativity.
The example he gave was Wikipedia. A constellation. Its designers, commodities trader from AL, Jimmy Wales, and his team developed the largest human knowledge transfer engine the world has ever seen. They weren’t the gatekeepers or arbiters; continues to be crowd-sourced reference material; the team opened it up to all of us to co-create. And it will last forever. Not perfect, to be sure, but what is?
Fascinating, right? The power in you and me encourages each of us to give it away, listen more than we speak, encourage collaboration wherever possible. Very thought-provoking way for me to start the week.
See you in the trenches.
Biden Administration imposes travel ban on eight African nations amid ‘Omicron’ variant,’ another highly contagious variant. What we know and don’t know about this new variant.
Really great webinar last week, hosted by the MN Chamber, on President Biden’s Emergency Temporary Standard requiring vaccinations or testing for businesses with 100+ employees. The ETS has been stayed by the 5thCircuit Court. Click to view this on-demand webinar for an update on the federal process and legal overview, Minnesota’s OHSA standards, and best practices to ensure your company is ready to comply with the final guidelines which impact businesses with 100 or more employees.
Upcoming webinar on Wed, 12/1, 12pm CST, on the most recent U.S. Consumer Spending Report, including trends in consumer demand and shopping patterns across demographics. Register here.
Officials say a shortage of housing, not jobs, is crimping economic development in Greater Minnesota. Growth requires relocation, relocation requires more housing.
Rice Larpenteur Alliance – Ramsey County, St. Paul, Maplewood, and Roseville have been partnering and pooling resources to improve border neighborhood around Rice St and Larpenteur Ave. The partners and community together are transforming the area.
Public Affairs Issue Forums: one final forum to finish out the year:
Read more updates in our weekly Chamber Advocacy Update.
Holiday Events ahead in St. Paul!
The Rice Larpenteur Alliance is excited to present the Shop Local Guide.
You’re not uncool. Making friends as an adult is just hard.
Your Chamber’s annual Holiday Open House is back December 9 – with a special twist to thank businesses for their years of partnership. We look forward to seeing you there!
‘Do I have to return to the office?’ Here’s how employers can address that high-stakes question. Returning to the office, but there’s a catch.
Vistage recommends 6 podcasts for 2022 leaders should listen to. If you know me at all, you know I follow #3, “A Bit of Optimism,” with Simon Sinek.
Are you wondering about the history of Thanksgiving? The Reformer pointed me to this fascinating piece in the Washington Post about the tribe at the center of the myth of Thanksgiving, who mark the fourth Thursday in November as a day of mourning for the genocide and dispossession of land that followed.
The Mashpee Wampanoag were only recognized as a tribe by the federal government in 2007, and they only won a reservation under President Barack Obama, when the Mashpee Wampanoag were able to put 300 acres into a federal trust — about 0.5% of their land historically.
Comcast RISE grant awardees to 100 local BIPOC companies are announced!
Fairview Health Services repurposing of St. Joe’s – in a big way: announces expansive health and wellness services at St. Joseph’s campus in St. Paul. This includes a federally qualified health center, outpatient mental health and addiction services, food shelves, and adult day services. Quite impressive.
424-unit rental property in Inver Grove has sold for $98M, $28M increase from 3 years ago, potentially the areas’ top apartment sale of the year. New owners? CoStar reports that the buyer is a Montreal-based real estate investor and developer. The Minneapolis Fed wrote a great piece, Understanding the rise of investor-owned homes.
Industrial space is hot, but (no surprise) office market sags. In Q3, the Cities saw 550K SF net positive absorption. Good news. Currently, 5.4M TSF of new space under construction. Also good news. Meanwhile, “COVID still has a stranglehold on the beleaguered office market, at a negative 800K SF net absorption and a total of 1.4M SF under construction. Current office vacancy rate is 10.1%.
11/30/2021 01:51:22 pm
I have practiced "give away power" leadership for decades now and found the results to be tremendously valuable. Understanding that my ability to lead is connected to my ability to listen and learn has been a hallmark of my success.
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