Byron's Babbles

Approximately Right To Exactly Right

It’s funny; we all have that word when we are learning to talk that our parents told the story about. Mine was calling candles at Christmas time “nandles.” By my birthday I had perfected my speaking and called them candles on my birthday cake. For my son it was “corn on the bob” instead of “corn on the cob.” The point of the story is that we both eventually got it right. As an educator, I’ve always understood the power of praising progress and growth to proficiency. Somehow, though, many leaders forget this with adults.

This week in Simple Truth #6, “Praise Progress!”, in Simple Truths of Leadership: 52 Ways To Be A Servant Leader and Build Trust, Making Common Sense Common Practice we are told by Ken Blanchard and Randy Conley that “Good performance is a moving target, not a final destination” (p. 21). Their point is that if we are serving correctly as a leader we will be coaching, developing, and cheerleading along the way – not just waiting to see if there is success or failure. As we’re told by Ken and Randy, “Exactly right behavior is made up of a series of approximately right behaviors” (p. 21). Nandles became candles and corn on the bob became corn on the cob. What was your word you had approximately right?

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