Dilbert - Management Embarrassment


  • “Leadership requires ‘an absence of shame around personal failures and imperfections’.

Being ridiculously remarkable, means being shameless about ridicule.

Friend and digital cohort on the subject of Leadership, Dr. Bret Simmons, buttressed Hugh’s perspective with the recent Tweet above. It is an excerpt from a book he recommends by Justin Menkes called “Better Under Pressure: How Great Leaders Bring Out the Best in Themselves and Others” It unites not just the Leadership/Management and embracing failure themes here, but also the issue of ‘black box’ complexity…

  • “When you as a leader possess the kind of humility that enables your awareness of true circumstances, you can face all kinds of stimuli, from negative personal feedback to challenging market fluctuations to employees’ or customers’ emotional reactions, without experiencing personal disruption. This utter absence of shame around your miscalculations or outright failures is the critical differentiator of someone acutely in touch with actual circumstances and someone who is not.”

This humility is what Scott Adams was talking about with his ‘ordinary superpower’ of ‘enduring embarrassment’ is particularly useful for a leader…

“My observation is that people such as Richard Branson or Elvis, or just about anyone famous, has willingly taken on a career that promises a lot of raised eyebrows, shaming, humiliation, and ego attacks. Some people shrug off that sort of stuff. They have that ordinary super power. And it makes success more likely because they get to compete against a smaller field. My hypothesis is that people who display a lack of embarrassment are seen by others as natural leaders. I suppose a lack of embarrassment looks like a form of bravery, and we’re wired to respond to it. When someone gives a speech to thousands, and shows no signs of nervousness, their confidence affects us. We assume good things about a person who is so cool under pressure. And when someone does something monumentally embarrassing, and shrugs it off with a smirk and a twinkle in the eye, we are in awe.”