Much of material used is from the book – The Leadership Secrets of Squirrels By – Simon Silverback
What can we learn from Squirrels? Especially about leadership? After all – squirrels primarily scamper from branch to branch – seemingly without purpose. They are almost “toy-like” – chasing each other around tree trunks. They appear to be dull of brain – and a pest at times. They are clowns on the lawn – menace to bird feeders – and often unsuccessful crossing a road.
So – why seek advice on leadership from squirrels?
Short and simply is: They were born to leadership – and we are not! Squirrels have purpose – while you and I have a direction.
First lesson - Leadership without purpose is like a compass in the hands of a fool – any direction will do.
Secrets include: Secrets on Crossing a Road Secrets from the ground Secrets at the Birdfeeder Secrets from a Squirrel’s Tail Secrets in the Trees Secrets about Owls
Secrets on Crossing a Road: Know why you are crossing the road. Know when to cross the road. Stick to your niche.
Secrets on Crossing a Road: Lead, follow, or get squashed on the road. Indecision is a decision with consequences. Too many quick decisions are worse than no decision.
Secrets on Crossing a Road: Doubt is as keen a sword as confidence. Old strategies often do not work for new situations.
Secrets of Crossing a Road Stay the course? If a problem appears – you must pick one – and only one – action from Column A and one, and only one, from Column B. ABAB STOP SLOWLY RETREAT QUICKLY CONTINUE CHANGE COURSE
Secrets on Crossing a Road: A car changes all plans. Balance planning with action. Be a risk taker. Never be afraid to reverse a bad decision. Be persistent – to a point.
Secrets from the ground: Bury many nuts, harvest few. Surround yourself with ideas. Not all ideas bear fruit – or nuts.
Invest today for payback tomorrow. Plan ahead – but not too far ahead. Every winter is a harsh winter.
Adapt. Be prepared to deal with a lot of nuts. There are never enough nuts.
Select the right nuts. Never count nuts while you gather them. Beware the nut-counters.
Unity of purpose, not unity of thought. Let everyone wander around. Never be a leader in all things. Never be a leader at all times.
Never eschew lesser tasks. Never fear failure. Never fear success. Never seek excellence in all things.
Secrets at the Birdfeeder Never attach a competitor’s strength. Be wary of traps. Know your strengths – and weaknesses.
Secrets from a Squirrel’s Tail You’re not in this alone. Maintain balance. Watch your back. Appear larger than life.
Secrets in the Trees See the forest – and the trees. Always put a tree between yourself and danger. Have lofty but achievable goals. Select the right tree(s). Embrace change. Be flexible in all things. Integrate work and play. Seek and take advice. Retreat and replenish Avoid dogs – and dogma
Secret about Owls Accept an owl’s wisdom. Reject an owl’s wisdom. Beware an owl’s beak and talons.
The Last Leaf Leadership – in the final analysis Leadership – in the final analysis: is about making choices and the right choices when it counts and dealing effectively with the bad choices along the way
Leadership is also about Leadership is also about Letting go And moving on We must all develop – and hopefully modify often – our theory of leadership. Have you buried it for safe keeping – can you find it?