Leadership – Three Variations on a Theme

Some thoughts on leadership and three ways to give it a spin!

Blood Sweat & Tears

Photo by RODNAE Productions on Pexels.com

I was reading through the comments on MDL yesterday regarding a current Kdrama – Oh! Master. There was one comment that jumped out at me regarding the piece of music played on guitar by one of my favourite supporting actors (Kim Chang Wan) during episode 9: Trois Gymnopedies by Erik Satie.

I had to respond to the comment, because Trois Gymnopedies was adapted and arranged by Dick Halligan as “Variations on a Theme by Erik Satie (1st and 2nd Movements)” which featured on the 1970 Grammy Award winning album of the year: Blood Sweat & Tears (By Blood Sweat & Tears and not to be confused with the group BTS 🤣). I commented that this is a fantastic version and worth listening to. I then received a fabulous comment back: “My favourite commentator from Longest Day in Chang’an!” Which, by the way, if you haven’t seen this show yet, give it a whirl. The detail and accuracy is breathtaking. You will find it on Amazon Prime.

Blood Sweat & Tears as an album had a number of big hits including:

A song to also listen out for is: God Bless the Child.

The album is listed in the 1001 Albums You Need to Listen to Before You Die (No.135). I still have my parent’s original vinyl copy and I just had to pull it out and give it a spin on the turntable.

Blood Sweat & Tears were not only master musicians, but great leaders in the music industry and introduced the world to a whole new type of music: jazz/rock.

Variations on a Theme

So, Variations on a Theme by Erik Satie (1st and 2nd Movements) did get me thinking about a few things yesterday. I mentioned in a post recently that leadership comes in all shapes and sizes and I might add, at any age. Despite all the wonderful academic study, reading and advice out there as well as practical training and development on the job we can do regarding leadership, it doesn’t become a reality until you give it a spin. So, what does giving it a spin mean?

Giving leadership a spin means:

  1. Understanding that being a leader is all about adaptation. In other words, what version do you need to be today, tomorrow, next week, next month, next year? Although you may use the same tools or methods over and over again while being a leader, not every organisation, place or situation requires the same approach. Often, you need to modify the leadership grab bag to suit what you find;
  2. Figuring out what works for you. Imitating another leader is very flattering for them, but is that who you really are? Being authentic is the name of the game (in fact it has been for 30 years, but whose counting?). Leaders are flawed. Great leaders know this. In some ways, leadership is like marketing. You need to test your brand, bit by bit and see what works favourably with others. You don’t have to be outgoing and extroverted. Many leaders are happily introverted.
  3. Putting the breaks on/Taking the breaks off. If there is concern around you regarding a particular course of action. Stop. Assess what is going on. Use your sounding boards. If your conclusion is that the course of action has to stop, then stop it and count the cost. Once accounted for, move on. However, if the breaks need to come off, then full steam ahead. Take everyone with you: keep everyone informed, promote collaboration, and don’t forget to support and develop your people long the way.

Grab Bag of Tricks

So what’s in my leadership grab bag of tricks? A whole range of things including: Albrecht’s Triangle (Karl Albrecht), The Learning Organisation (Peter Senge, Arie De Guis), Teams (Bruce Tuckman, Jon Katzenbach), Chaos Management (Tom Peters), just about anything by Peter Drucker, Graham Kenny, Alan Bandt, and George Aveling. Then there are those excellent blogs such as MiddleMe 😊

Is there a leadership style you like to use?

For Your Listening Pleasure

“Variations on a Theme by Erik Satie (1st and 2nd Movements)” by Blood, Sweat & Tears

7 Comments on “Leadership – Three Variations on a Theme”

    • Thank you so much for the appreciation 😊 As Bruce Lee once said: “Always be yourself, express yourself, have faith in yourself, do not go out and look for a successful personality and duplicate it.”

      Liked by 1 person

  1. We often have to change our style depending on who we’re working with and what our message is. I learnt in Mental Health Nurse Mentoring about how people have different learning styles so we need to modify our teaching or leadership styles to gain the best outcomes. Love this Sean and I agree, flexibility’s the key.

    Liked by 2 people

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