Leadership with Star Trek Style

In Good to Great, Jim Collins talks about getting the right people on the bus, and getting them in the right seat on the bus.  The new Star Trek movie shows us just how important this can be.

There is a critical point in the movie where a seat change is critical. If Spock had remained the captain, the Enterprise would have rejoined the fleet and Earth would have been destroyed.

Kirk had other plans.

There are different kinds of leaders, and each has strengths, weaknesses, and arenas where they will shine best.

Kirk is a bold leader.  He is the kind of leader who knows how to take risks.  Kirk’s brain makes promises his body can’t always fulfill.  He needed three things to be a success:

  • a challenge
  • a team that was each the best in their field
  • an excellent coach and mentor.

Spock is a superior leader as well.  He is the kind of leader that can develop people from any level of competency.  He, however, is linear and structured.  If he takes risks, they will be calculated risks.  He is the best person to be in the second seat behind a bold risk taker.  While Kirk is leaping for the moon (figuratively speaking), Spock will assemble a team to make a rope bridge and anchor it.  He will also become an anchor of wisdom in the sea of galactic turmoil.

The rest of the team wasn’t as developed in this movie, except to point out that they were either the best at their jobs, or particularly loyal to either Kirk or Spock.  That brings us back to the first.  To boldly go you need to:

  1. know yourself.
  2. know where you fit
  3. build a team – and make it the best team possible
  4. find a great mentor or even two
  5. add value and be the best at what you are supposed to be
  6. Get the right people on the bus, and get them in the right seat.

Save me a seat!  Blessings!


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