Probably the most important key to effective leadership (in my somewhat
ridiculous world of entertainment and publishing) is looking up from
the daily mess of creation to see the big picture and recognize the
need for renovation–for a new solution to a problem that is lingering
and not getting solved. In our world right now at Writers of the Round Table,
we have been struggling with the distribution of our books. As I have
mentioned in other postings, we have spent years (a decade myself)
learning to develop exceptional products. I am not an expert in the
distribution of those products. My team is amazing, mind you, and we
have unbelievable expertise in creating the brand and all of the
support for the distribution machine. What we do not have is the
distribution network in place. It just has not been a priority until
now. So instead of continuing to function from the standpoint that our
branding will be enough, I have finally started to wake up to the
reality that is in front of my eyes. I need a powerhouse distributor.
Whether that be a hungry individual who will spearhead researching and
building this aspect of our business, or a partnership with an already
effective company such as Independent Publishers Group
(who we are seriously looking into), is yet to be determined. What is
most important is that we have recognized the need for change and are
in the process of immersing ourselves in information so that we can
make an educated decision and then proceed aggressively (something we
LOVE to do). This is my job as the head of the company. While my staff
is building their own divisions and working to make those aspects of
our business as effective as possible, I have the responsibility to
look at the whole and point us in that new direction.
Leader to Leader, I encourage you to look up from the work as often as
possible and listen to the conversation that is being had beneath the
surface, so you can find solutions to problems you are yet aware of.
For me the problem makes itself apparent in my emotional landscape (I
get crabby!–ask my wife!). Think of how ineffective systems within
your company or organization effect you, and then maintain a sense of
awareness, so that you can see those reactions rising in
you–effectively warning you of the need for contemplation and eventual
change and growth. Don’t avoid the work in these times. Instead–read
other books, have conversations with those around you. Take a walk and
ruminate. Clarity will come from the silence and space you give
yourself to find it.
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