Realistic Perspectives

A concentration of material and thoughts focused around leadership, values, ethics, efficiency and effectiveness

Leadership lessons from geese!

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People look at geese and go “Hmm.. Geese”. Some would say they look nice others would say that they are just “stupid birds”. Well, they actually can teach a modern day manager how to lead. And thats kind of sad, because the world has come to a stage where a human has to take leadership lesson from an avian.

If you carefully observe a the migrating habits of geese, you will notice that they do fly in the shape of a arrow. The reason for this is that a flock of geese can fly a 71 percent greater range in the form of a arrow rather than flying alone. Flying in the shape of a arrow means that the geese encounter lesser wind resistance and drag.

I am sure you must be wondering what all this has got to do with leadership. The simple fact is that the bird forming the tip of the arrow, cuts through the air and reduces air resistance benefiting the geese following it. The other geese keep honking in order to motivate the other geese and the leader, but eventually the leader tires and drops back from exhaustion and another goose takes its place.

The fundamental lesson here is that a leader will often have to take on challenges, criticism, hate and resistance when standing up for his/her team. But the team knows that the leader is making life easier for them and therefore supports the leader. And finally, when the leader has exhausted all options, a team member would step in to bear the leaders burden, but a team member can only do this if the leader has empowered him/her.

Its interesting that man developed the first aircraft through studying birds in flight. Today we find that we humans have learnt certain lessons regarding leadership and indeed teamwork, from geese in flight.


Written by Talal Cassim

March 20, 2010 at 5:40 pm

Posted in Leadership

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