Ain't Gotta Be...
...the Way It's Always Been


Decisionary Leadership: Tools for Growth
Robert LH O'Connor
                          -EyeSign Publishing-     

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TOOLS

Decisionary Leadership : Tools for Growth is now available!      


Ain’t Gotta Be the Way It’s Always Been and Decisionary Leadership: Tools For Growth can be vehicles for personal and organizational growth. By introducing three key tools and establishing the importance of several concepts and principles, growth can occur.

Two integral components of growth that the tools address are: 1) Why do I act the way I do (Or in the case of an organization: Why do we act the way we do)?   2) How do I recognize and set real priorities based on values and beliefs? For an action plan to be effective in the long term, these two important questions need to be answered.

Meaningful growth on any level also involves “decisionary leadership”–making values-based decisions with vision. This is the basis for behavior that will lead an individual, family, group or organization towards the fulfillment of the goals, objectives and the vision of what one seeks to accomplish.

Excerpt from Ain't Gotta Be the Way It's Always Been

Why We Do What We Do

We sat by the evening fire planning the following day’s activities: a hike to Lightning Lake—what we had been told was a prime golden trout lake—and checking out the possible cave near Turtle Rock.

The question again surfaced, “Grandpa, why do we do what we do?”

I looked into the inquisitive young eyes to see the intensity of those eyes sincerely searching for understanding.

I had learned over the years that one-on-one times like these are often the best environments to teach or share thoughts, concerns, feelings, and just life in general. Teaching can happen only when those who are taught are ready to hear. You can’t really force someone to learn or share their inner feelings and thoughts—just be there and try to recognize the timing.

Sometimes these opportunities just happen; other times, with patience and a little planning, opportunities may surface. That is where doing something together and sharing time comes into play. Cleaning up together earlier in the day had created a time to talk, or exploring, playing a game together, or working on a project. I had learned that the quantity of time was important, not just quality time, to earn trust and develop relationships.

            The timing seemed good.

Turning to the young man, I asked, “Remember what we talked about this morning?”

“I remember the FIRE, ‘bout getting things done. But I forgot about what makes us do things.”

I responded to the “why,” reminding him about the match that lights the fire but also told him that it might take a while to really explain in more detail why we do what we do.

To my surprise, a second voice responded, “Dad, why don’t you tell us both about that. I think I might like to hear it too.”

This was the first time since my son was just a young boy that he had wanted to hear me talk. I had not really had the opportunity to teach many of life’s lessons to him. I had wanted to and hoped to, but the unfortunate circumstances, perceptions, and relationship influences of divorce had diverted those attempts. I had missed opportunities. In the following years, I had tried to be patient about creating an environment to be able to just talk to him. I had wanted to be able to help mold my children’s values and teach them what I had learned so they wouldn’t have to make the same mistakes I had. There were many times I had lost faith that I would ever have any opportunity to do so, but I had worked hard at keeping hope alive for those moments of connection.

This was possibly one of those moments.

With in a few minutes, more wood was on the fire, and the three of us settled down. Now two sets of inquisitive eyes focused on me. I was nervous, hoping that I would be able to take this moment—a moment that I had waited for—and do what I had visualized in my mind many times for more than twenty years.

“Well,” I started, “let’s bring your Dad up to speed. Do you remember this morning when we were cleaning up? Do you remember what I was saying about important things?”

“Yes,” my grandson responded, “About sometimes some things are more important than other things—and different people have different priorities—like doing cleanup or going fishing.”

            “Yep, that’s it,” I said as I repositioned my old lucky fishing hat on my head—a hat my father had worn on many of his fishing trips.

“Priorities are what’s important, and we have to make decisions about what is most important all the time. And that all depends on what we value and believe.”

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