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The Four Wires of Leadership

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The exercise of authority and control only occurs when the team (or overall organization) is in crisis and is looking anywhere for someone to take charge or at least assume responsibility (and often subsequently being assigned all of the blame – as a convenient scapegoat). If the wire four leader is reticent to step in, then the team (and other members of the organization) might be inclined to “collude” in manufacturing the crisis (or creating the false image of the crisis) to get the leader’s attention or at least shatter the leader’s seeming apathy and indifference to the fate of the team and (more broadly) welfare of the organization.

These are all very important issues to be addressed in a coaching session. The first step might be to bringing up the four-wire analogy and determine which wire is most often descriptive of the leader’s way of working with their team. As Keven O’Brien has noted, the flight deck on a carrier can be a very dangerous place. We need thoughtful and self-reflective leaders to assist in making the landing of planes (and the performance of teams) a bit less dangerous—and remaining intact for the next important mission.

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Note: Photo of Moon provided by Owen Bergquist

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