Thursday, March 7, 2013

Vision, mechanics, moment

A whole lot has been written about great leaders who can move their constituencies and really get things done. For me, Jon Meacham summed it up recently by positing three elements that have to be there:
  • Vision
  • Mechanics
  • Moment
Vision is one we all know about: foresight to a differentiated future, presumably differentiated in such a way that the business is more competitive, public policy is more enlightened and effective, or the scorecard is demonstratively more favorable.

Mechanics are the means to the end-game, the "how" that goes with the "what, when, where" constituents. Mechanics could be exemplary communication skills (See: the great communicator) but they could be mastery of the actual mechanics of getting things done. (See: the auteur)

Moment is the time to act. Mastery of both mechanics and vision are more rare than you might believe, but understanding their fit to the "moment" -- the right time to grasp the opportunity -- and acting decisively to not let the moment pass is a special talent. (See: Netscape killer)