Hot dogs. Hamburgers. Pizza. French Fries. Soda.
You know… normal food. If I ate this food everyday most people would never blink an eye. Then when I have my first heart attack they will feel bad for me. Like it happened to me. As if I was betrayed by my own arteries.
Now, if I choose blood pressure medicine as my solution to my heart condition, again, no one blinks an eye. However, if i choose to eat a large raw salad with no dressing then I’m “a rabbit.” If I pass on the cake them i’m “no fun.” If I abandon all processed food, swim, bike and run daily, eat organic fruits and vegetables, and pick off the feta cheese from my salad then i’m a “controlling, picky, uppity, food snob, who only cares about how I look.” In other words, I’m strange.
Interesting that for thousands of years we ate the food we grew and within a 100 year time frame we have decided that it is more normal to eat the substances in a frozen package that came from a science lab.
What do we do when what is normal is actually killing us and what is now considered socially strange is what heals you and sustains your life?
We have the same problem in our work places as leaders. The very things that are taught as normal are the very same things that are creating your future “heart attack.” If you begin to address the health of your organization you are now “soft, touchy feely, and weak.”
The fact is that vulnerability in leadership is the starting point of building a healthy organization. Vulnerability in the work place has a transformative effect that opens communication, enables creativity and speeds up recovery from mis-steps. Even if you know you should have it in your leadership, most leaders don’t have it enough. Much like believing a side salad is “getting in your greens.”
Vulnerability needs to be the center point of your leadership, not a side dish. It will seem odd when you first start practicing it. Some people in your circle may not like it. It doesn’t change the fact that vulnerability, like kale, will heal your organization and make it thrive again.