Friday, October 20, 2006

Great ending for awesome P1

Wow. Now period 1 really is over. Granted, I still have exams next week, but classes and interactions with P1 Professors are over. Chances are, I will not have Enrico, Michael, or Tim again in classes.

This afternoon, Michael made his farewell too, closing his best class of the period. The subject was about Leadership (a leftover from last session), and Negotiations.

Michael Brimm introduced us with the LEAD self model (P. Hersey, K. Blanchard), which I found extremely relevant. I probably have more than average leadership experience, and so many issues echoed in me. Basically, there are 4 types of leadership styles, according to a matrix task/relationship: delegating (low task, low relationship), participating (LT, HR), selling (HT, HR), and telling (HT, LR). If you put your subordinates in your matrix, you get great insights. For instance, low abilities, low motivation people need to be lead with a dictatorial style; high abilities high motivation (or high potentials) should be lead through delegation, for them to make mistakes and learn. Further, the model made an intelligent distinction between Management (participating and selling), and Leadership (delegating and telling).
I found myself scoring Effective Leadership, Selling/Telling type -which I could easily relate to. It also emphasised my needs for improvement in delegating, and participating (although this latter quadrant is not very significant).

That discussion naturally drove the class to getting to the basics. We all talk about management, leadership, hard work. Michael reminded us that we should not forget other dimensions of Life.
We all are launching great projects in our lives, at various points: a career, a business, a partnership, children. Questioned about what was driving us to work hard at INSEAD, we in majority answered (in no order): the fear of regret, long term returns, exams or work deadlines, the drive to invest for a short period of time our most valuable asset ie. our lives. Yet, Michael argued, our priorities are often wrong -but it's not too late- given that all executives tell him they should've known better. He suggested that instead of Today having means towards an end Tomorrow, we should have and END today towards a MEANS tomorrow. The END today is Fun, Growth, Learning, to be a better person tomorrow vs. overwork today to have fun, grow more tomorrow. That all make sense in everyday's life words: as Michael said, your holidays tomorrow at 50 will not be the same as today's, your relationship tomorrow will not be the same as today's (in fact, that other person may not wait for us to invest our life in work for latter returns), your children tomorrow will not be your children of today.

Michal stopped short of saying that we should be more epicureans. He just emphasized that whatever we choose, we should be aware of consequences.

Finally, Michael underlined that we should not neglect our networks, and that INSEAD was a wonderful place for that. In network he meant having people who filled our various needs: intimacy, colleague, self worth, assistance, guidance, nurturing, creative irritator.

Of course, Michael deservedly won a standing ovation; he was sincerely moved, and so were we.
I'm having such an incredible time over here!


To know more about the Hershey/Blanchard LEAD self model click the link. There is a questionnaire that goes with it and enables you to get a score along the different dimensions.



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