A.J. Lafley constantly echoed that “We weren’t going to win if it was an ‘or,’ Everybody can do ‘or.’ That’s the way the world works. You trade things off. But you’re not going to be the best in your industry. You are not going to win if you are in a trade-off game.”
Roger Martin, The Opposable Mind: Winning Through Integrative Thinking (Boston, MA: Harvard Business School Publishing, 2009)
Results from successful transformation efforts have proven that the paradox of true leadership is to become adept at using both sides of the brain and is a balancing act between the the following in dynamic environments:
- Providing vision yet empowering others
- Giving up control yet architecting the choices
- Sustaining yet disrupting the business model
- Relying on data yet trusting your intuition
- Being skeptical yet open-minded
- We will always welcome messy, complex tensions (paradoxes).
- We will foster a deep appreciation and respect for paradoxical tensions.
- We will value paradoxes as vital ingredient of high performance.
- We will proactively identify and raise tensions including a code of conduct to stress tensions that spur creativity.
- We will avoid traps of anxiety and defensiveness.
- We will consistently communicate a both/and vision while exhibiting, in Collins’ words, “pragmatic idealism”.
- We will separate efforts to focus on both sides of a paradox (“collective genius of the AND logic”).
- We will constantly learn to step back and question our initial discomfort and desire for an either/or solution.
- We believe we are doing something that has never been done before and we will take risks, innovate, and learn from our fast failures.