Leadership development starts with developing as a human being. The classical Greek philosophers such as Plato discussed already the properties of being: Beauty, Goodness & Truth. So, in a way I’m the business of Beauty, Goodness & Truth. As a scientist Truth is the obvious one, and as a leadership scholar Goodness as well, but what about Beauty?
I therefore followed a half day experiential workshop from Hal Gregerson, executive director from the MIT Leadership Center that made the connection between photography & leadership. To be a good photographer you need to have an open mind, it is observational work, you have to intuition that something interesting will happen in that place, you need to engage fully with the world even if it uncomfortable, you have to be in the moment, recognize patterns, etc. All characteristics one could argue to be relevant for leaders as well. Moreover photography is also about having technique that allows you to be open for the unexpected, rephraming things, asking the right questions, and reveals something of the photographer him/herself worldview. But do you know trough which lens you look at world? Together with the national geographic photographer Sam Abell they learn you to become a better photographer and a better leader.
In the afternoon, I followed a different experiential workshop: it made the connection between dance and leadership. Insights on how you lead, how you follow, when you trust, how you make connection, how handle changes in rhythms, the importance of practice, listening and observing the other, to be one and in the moment, etc. could all be gained from it.
And if it all went well, if the photo or the dance felt good and was correct it was also beautiful. The same can be said from leadership and leadership development.