Legacy - Lessons in Leadership #2

Legacy - Lessons in leadership #2

The book, "Legacy" by James Kerr covers lessons in leadership that can be learnt from the game of ruby. The book discusses how the All Blacks achieved greatness and applies some of these lessons to the world of business to help make us into better business leaders.

I have previously covered:

Today, I am covering the second lesson from the book.

Go for the gap

In the game of rugby, you need to do the unexpected and go where the opposition expect that you aren't going to go. The field will be marked by your opposite players trying to block your path but if you see a gap, you need to go for it.

When you are on top of your game, change your game

In the game, if you become too predictable, the opposition will learn to predict your every move. Once you are winning well because you found a successful strategy, it is time to change and think about the next strategy.

So how does this relate to the world of business?

You have probably heard of the story of Nokia. They were on the top of the game at one point being the world's leader in mobile phones. They produced the first mobile phone with a camera to enter the US market. However, they didn't change their game and innovation by Apple and later others like Samsung and HTC, nearly pushed them out of the market.

Business, like many things in the natural world, follows cycles. It is similar to society and empires. Consider the Roman or the British empires. They grew gradually from nothing. They then had enormous growth to their glory days. They then started their decline, gradual at first but eventually collapsing. This non-linear movement is called a sigmoid function and business tends to follow a similar path.

In business and sport, we start with the Learning Phase. Things are unfamiliar and we often make mistakes. We then find the Growth Phase where we become efficient and effective at what we do. We get rich, we are rewarded, people sing our praises. We are at the top of the world, and then the Decline Phase starts.

So how to avoid it?

When you are on top of your game, change your game

When you are doing well in business - don't stay static. Look for the next best thing. Try to innovate or diversify. "Go for the gap". Don't become arrogant that you are at the top and the best. You are at the top of the curve and the direction is down. Go for the gap.


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