Flying has always been my passion and one of man’s oldest dreams and one of the bird species I’ve always wondered about is the goose, especially when they flying together in formation and migrating towards warmer climates.
And when it comes to flow, engagement, team dynamics and leadership, we can learn a lot from these birds.
1. Trust and respect.
A wedge of geese will fly thousands of kilometers in a perfect V formation. It’s estimated that flying in formation flying is 70 percent more efficient than flying alone. It conserves their energy. Each bird flies slightly above the bird in front of him, resulting in a reduction of wind resistance.
We prosper when we share a common direction and sense of community. We can get where we are going faster and better when we are traveling together and trusting each other forward than when we are traveling alone.
2. Interdependence and shared vision.
At a distance the wedge appears to be guided by a single leader. But the lead bird does not in fact guide the formation. When the lead bird tires, it rotates back in the formation to take advantage of the lifting power of the birds in front.
Leadership is best shared. We can excel if we stay in formation with those headed where we want to go, accepting their help and giving ours. True leadership means interdependence.
3. Positive communication:
Each flock of geese finds its own unique rhythm and spirit. The pulsating sound of the huge flapping wings excites and energizes the entire formation; the geese enthusiastically honk from behind to encourage those in front to keep up their speed.
We need to make sure we are honking positive words to each other. Positive communication is powerful: Groups where it is practiced are far more productive. We can find strength in standing by each other, in strength and in difficulty.
4. Recovery and resourcing.
In the northern hemisphere, geese fly south to spend the winter in a warmer climate.
Especially in the cold and darkness of winter, it’s important to remember to get away, to refresh ourselves, to recharge our batteries.
5. Core values and purpose:
The migration route of geese never varies. They use the same route year after year. Even when the flock members change, the youngsters learn the route from their parents. In the spring, they will return to the spot where they were born.
The lesson to learn here is to stay true to our core values and purpose.
Strategies, tactics and products may change in order for an organization to remain agile, but great companies always stick to their core values and purpose and preserve them with vigour.
When you have a team dynamic that is based on trust, respect, interdependence, encouragement, loyalty and rejuvenation, you have leadership that is not only meaningful but matters.
Want to know more about FLOW and leadership? Book Cedric as a speaker for your next extra-ordinary event! Check his contact details on our team page.