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Head – Address the Hippo in the Room

Sometimes, because the leader, you must address the elephant in the room. If you don’ big t, you’ ll have a hard time top well moving forward.

The elephant is the issue/person/thing that is obvious to everybody, but no one has done everything about it yet.

Everyone is thinking it, but no one is talking about this – at least out loud.

Years ago, I had been serving on a team high was a consistent idea fantastic. Whenever anyone on the team presented an idea, regardless of the idea’ s value, this person would capture it down. He often saw the glass since half-empty and was undesirable about anything new.

It’ ersus okay to have someone who requests questions to make things much better. We in fact should encourage these people, yet this guy was a doomsayer within the room. He never saw any positive in everything – regardless of the conversation, so , for example , we would be idea and he would kill the momentum. Just when everybody thought we had a good plan in place, he would poke more holes in it. He by no means had new ideas to improve things and simply didn’ to like anyone else’ ersus idea.

This wasn’ t helpful and was, therefore , actually disruptive.

However, as annoying as it has been, leadership allowed it to keep. Everyone talked about it outside of meetings. No one respected the idea killer. Our own senior leader insisted even he had counseled with this person privately, yet it by no means seemed to improve.

This guy was the elephant within the room.

It led me to some conclusion I have selectively used in leadership:

Sometimes, as a innovator, you have to address the “ elephant in the room” – in the room.

  • Everyone knows it is there. (You can’ t skip an elephant. )
  • It keeps being repeated. (You’ ve handled it individually. Nothing is promoting. )
  • It likely will keep getting worse in case unaddressed. (At least which has been my experience. )

At some time, the leader has to address the elephant.

You can’ t disregard an elephant in a area. Elephants take up a lot of beneficial space.

With everyone in the room, innovator, address the elephant.

You may have to contact out the person causing the disruption in the presence of everyone otherwise in the room.

Yes, it’ s difficult, uncomfortable, and, frankly, you don’ t want to do attempting to. You should never address it until you have attempted to handle it privately, but it may be necessary to continue leading the group well.

If you don’ t:

  • Everyone will assume this type overall performance is tolerated.
  • The negative actions will be copied by others.
  • Team dynamics can never be healthy.
  • Respect for the leader – with this issue and others – will diminish.

Leader, when you understand in your gut it’ t time to address the hippo!

You have to, because the greatest excuses won’ t hide an elephant. Plus, elephants don’ t often depart the room on their own.

Have you ever served on a team where the elephant wasn’ t addressed and it negatively impacted the team?

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