Tribal Leadership – Dave Logan, John King, Halee Fischer-Wright
There are five stages of tribal leadership, and each can be identified by the words people use to communicate. This book teaches us to focus on language and behavior to transform disjointed, selfish individuals into a cohesive, selfless team.
The Tribal Leadership Navigation System
About 75% of workplace tribes operate at Stage Three or below. The goal of this book is to upgrade your tribe to Stage Four.
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You determine what stage your tribe is at by listening to how most people talk and noticing how most people structure their work relationships.
Each cultural stage has its own way of speaking, types of behaviors, and structures of relationships.
Tribal Leaders do two things:
- Listen for what cultures exist in their tribes
- Upgrade those tribes using specific leverage points
Stage Two: Disconnected and Disengaged
Stage Two has an ineffective relationship with values that come across as cynicism, sarcasm, or resignation.
They accept obstacles as the way they are and the way it always will be. They give up, and they band together in a sort of support group for the oppressed.
They spend a lot of time making fun of bad managers – “idiot bosses”
Stage Two wants to avoid accountability at all costs and will invent reasons to remain disconnected and disengaged.
Stage Two: Leverage Points
Encourage the team member to make a friend. To establish dyadic (two-person) relationships.
Encourage the team member to establish relationships with people who are at late Stage Three—people who are eager to mentor others into becoming mini-versions of themselves.
In one-on-one sessions, show the team member how the work that they do makes an impact. Show them areas where they are competent and where their strengths are.
Stage Three: The Wild, Wild West
Stage Three is the zone of personal accomplishment.
It’s also an area where people tend to feel let down by others.
There’s a perception that people are where they are because they worked for it, and others aren’t there because they gave up.
People in the middle of stage three have an intense focus on time management since they believe that they can rely only on themselves.
When people at Stage Three get together, they try to outperform each other.
Stage Three: Leverage Points
Encourage projects that are too big to be done alone.
Point out that the next level of success is going to require a different style than going at it alone.
When they complain that they (1) don’t have time and (2) other people aren’t as good, show them that they’ve crafted their work life so that no one can really contribute.
Coach them that real power comes not from knowledge but from networks and that there is more leverage in wisdom than in information.
Encourage them to manage using transparency.
The Tribal Leader Epiphany
Nothing that matters is personal.
Stage Three has no legacy.
To win at Stage Three is to win small.
I now see I have been a manipulator, not a leader.
I’m tired; isn’t there some other game to play?
I see myself through others’ eyes, and I don’t like what I see.
Stage Four: Establishing Tribal Leadership
Rules for Brainstorming:
- Stay focused
- One conversation at a time
- Be visual
- Go for quantity
- Defer judgment
- Encourage wild ideas
Establishing the culture:
Get a group of like-minded people together and ask how to create or expand a business.
Look for a group of people within a Stage Three organization who want to play a Stage Four game.
Ignore organizational boundaries and use tribal antennae to find people who want to create a Stage Four tribe, allowing them to guide the development of the group.
Triads and Stage Four Networking
Empower others to resolve conflict by reminding them of their shared values.
Stable triads resolve incidents and free the time of Tribal Leaders to focus on strategy.
Stage Four organizations actively pull in resources, approaches, consultants, ideas, or anything else that will build the tribe.
The next time you go to Starbucks, take two friends, not one.
5 Components of Tribal Strategy
- Noble cause
Outcomes Vs. Goals
A goal is off in the future. It implies failure in the present. “when we achieve the goal, we will have stopped failing” is how many people relate to the goal-setting process.
In contrast, an outcome is a present state of success that becomes an even bigger victory over time. An outcome says, “This is what it looks like at this point in the process.”
Outcomes must be measurable, with a deadline.
Quarterly Oil Change
A chance for tribal members to revisit what’s happened, understand events from all sides, resolve issues, and remove any process, system, or habit that’s inconsistent with its values and noble cause.
Ask the Big Four Questions together as a team.
Anything not consistent with the core values and noble cause must be reworked or pruned.