Why Your Lodge Brothers May Be Confused

 

 

Do you ever think the brothers in your lodge are confused about why your lodge exists? If so maybe it’s because a clear, compelling vision has not been created, communicated and understood by all the brothers.

“A vision is perhaps best understood as a dream of the future. It is where you define what is important to the organization and hope that it is important enough to others to inspire them to join and to participate.”

Now, why is that important? There are several good answers to that question.

  • A good vision statement brings people together in a common effort to realize a commonly desired future
  • It gives hope for a better future
  • It inspires people to realize their dreams through positive action together
  • It provides the basis for the organizational planning process because it defines the destination

So many times the leaders of organizations assume everyone knows the vision. These same leaders are then surprised to learn that there may be many versions of the organizational vision. It may be that is was never created or created and never communicated; so everyone used their own.

Don’t assume everyone in your lodge has the same vision and is headed in the same direction. If you are a leader, you should give direction and that direction should come from a clear, agreed upon vision.

Have a Great Masonic Day!

How to get your Vision back on track

Every leader encounters a time when despite their best efforts to inspire others to buy-in to their vision, they don’t feel enough people are paying attention. When this occurs it is time to stop, reevaluate, realign, re-prioritize and begin anew with a positive attitude.

However, if may be difficult to motivate yourself because the prevailing thought in your mind is “why bother if no one is listening?”

So to refocus your thinking in a positive manner you need to do the following things to get you back on track.

      • Talk to your mentor – Go back to the person you confide in and tell them how you feel. They will provide you an honest assessment of your situation. Tell them of your efforts to achieve your vision, your successes, your failures and your plan to continue. Ask them to help you to evaluate your plan and provide you advice on how to proceed. You should leave this meeting with a better attitude because you needed someone to listen; a good mentor is a good listener.
      • Talk to your inner circle – With a preliminary adjusted plan in hand, meet with your leadership inner circle and discuss it with them. Together go over the vision, the goals and the action plans you all originally agreed upon. Determine what is working, what is not and make the necessary changes to continue toward the vision.
      • Talk to the influencers in your organization – These are people whose opinions are respected by a large number of followers. Discuss your vision again, share with them your revised plan and ask them for their thoughts. Spend more time listening than talking. If they agree with the vision and the plan to achieve it, ask for their support. If not, go back to your inner circle for another discussion and revisions. Continue doing this until you have buy-in from the influencers.

This process will help you rid yourself of the thought that no one is listening. It focuses you on the positive aspects of your vision and connects you with people who are supportive and encouraging.

Have a Great Masonic Day!

“The Boss” Bruce Springsteen Leads with Trust

BruceSprintgsteen_05

At the E Street Band’s induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Roy Bittan, piano player for the band, said this:

“When we are called into the studio we are not handed a piece of paper with music to play. We are entrusted with the responsibility to use our music instincts and our particular vision to create a record.”

This statement by the E Street Band’s piano player says so much about Bruce Springsteen’s stature as a leader and the respect the band members have of him and their craft.

“We are entrusted with the responsibility…”

  1. They understand that what they are about to create will reflect on their leader’s reputation
  2. They acknowledge that Bruce trusts them to maintain that reputation
  3. They respect Bruce and his music and do not want their efforts to tarnish him or his music

“…to use our music instincts and our particular vision”

  1. They understand that Bruce has given them latitude to use the music they individually believe will produce a great record
  2. They also know that their individual vision must meld with the other musicians’ visions to preserve the E Street sound
  3. They understand that Bruce respects them as musicians and has great trust in their instincts

Great teams build great trust. They build great respect for one another. This trust and respect allows them to pursue and accomplish the team’s goal without fear that their individual reputations will be diminished by another member of the team.

Be a great leader and build great teams with Trust and Respect.

Have a Great Masonic Day and Become a Leader!

 

 

 

3 Things to do when you feel no one is listening to your vision

not-listeningEvery leader encounters a time when despite their best efforts to inspire others to buy-in to their vision, they don’t feel enough people are paying attention. When this occurs it is time to stop, reevaluate, realign, re-prioritize and begin anew with a positive attitude. However, if may be difficult to motivate yourself because the prevailing thought in your mind is “why bother if no one is listening?”

So to refocus your thinking in a positive manner you need to do the following things to get you back on track.

Talk to your mentor – Go back to the person you confide in and tell them how you feel. They will provide you an honest assessment of your situation. Tell them of your efforts to achieve your vision, your successes, your failures and your plan to continue. Ask them to help you to evaluate your plan and provide you advice on how to proceed. You should leave this meeting with a better attitude because you needed someone to listen; a good mentor is a good listener.

Talk to your inner circle – With a preliminary adjusted plan in hand, meet with your leadership inner circle and discuss it with them. Together go over the vision, the goals and the action plans you all originally agreed upon. Determine what is working, what is not and make the necessary changes to continue toward the vision.

Talk to the influencers in your organization – These are people whose opinions are respected by a large number of followers. Discuss your vision again, share with them your revised plan and ask them for their thoughts. Spend more time listening than talking. If they agree with the vision and the plan to achieve it, ask for their support. If not, go back to your inner circle for another discussion and revisions. Continue doing this until you have buy-in from the influencers.

This process will help you rid yourself of the thought that no one is listening. It focuses you on the positive aspects of your vision and connects you with people who are supportive and encouraging.

Another situation to be aware of is your sense of urgency to achieve the vision and your organization’s urgency will probably be on two different levels. Even with a well thought out vision, a well defined and communicated plan, organizations tend to be very complacent. John P. Kotter, author of “Leading Change” and “Our Iceberg Is Melting,” in his book “A Sense of Urgency”  said, “Highly destructive complacency is, in fact, all around us, including in places where people would deny it, deny it, and deny it still more.”

This organizational complacency will eventually discourage a leader, especially if he has a vision that he believes, if achieved, will greatly improve the organization. A leader with a drive to achieve a vision has a great sense of urgency. He is impatient and sometimes cannot stand to watch as the organization continues its complacent plod toward nowhere and without a unity of vision.

As Masonic leaders we need to be aware that casting and communicating a vision is a sometimes a frustrating process. You will sometimes be discouraged and feel that no one is listening and that no one cares. You will also find that if they do care they may not be moving at the same speed you are. When you get discouraged, talk with all the people you rely on for advice; they are a great help and will lift your spirits.

Have a Great Masonic Day!