A Wisconsin-based leadership program for children has a few things to
teach those of us who definitely aren't children anymore. (Manito - Wish
Leadership Programs - www.manito-wish.org) They have, as one of their
principles, the maxim that a leader 'Doesn't collaborate to turn out the lights.'
This got me to wondering how often we, who frequently know better than we
do, are the ones who turn out the lights. I doubt any of us can honestly say
we are never the guilty party. I suspect it happens more often than we would
want to admit, even to ourselves. Let's think a bit about how that happens
and, more importantly, about what we can do to reduce our contributions to
Since the Manito maxim is intended for children but works well for all of
us, perhaps we can also access another source intended for children we can
use to discover the secrets for not turning off the lights. Even better,
maybe we can learn to keep the lights on. Let's call people who succeed with
this critical challenge Illuminating Leaders.
The Friend Factory (Koenisha Publications, 2001) is a little chapter book
written with my granddaughter (Marissa Crow) that includes the seventeen
secrets for becoming a champion friend picker. We can use those secrets to be
champion leaders who don't turn out the lights with our co-workers, friends,
and families. It's tempting to change the language from the original text but
it likely works just as well mostly leaving it as written for the children.
Please send comments or questions to Gary A. Crow, Ph.D. GAC@GaryCrow.net