Leaders: Do You Know What Your Show Is?

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Motivational Speaker Bill StaintonOn September 26, 1990, a brand new show premiered on ABC, and television history was made. This show broke the rules, defied expectations, and was unlike anything anybody had ever seen before. The reason I say the show made history is because TV Guide rated it number 8 in their list of the 50 worst TV shows of all time. The show was called Cop Rock, and it lasted all of 11 episodes–which many people think was 10 episodes too many. This was a show that—believe it or not—actually tried to combine serious police drama with musical theater. Kind of like if CSI and Glee had a baby. But not a cute baby.

What was the problem with Cop Rock? I spoke with one of the stars of the show, Ronny Cox, and I’ll tell you what he said to me. He said, “We never really knew what the show was.”

We never really knew what the show was.

A producer has to know, first and foremost, what he or she is producing. A producer has to know what the show is.

As a leader, you’re the producer

As a leader, you’re the producer for your team. You’re the one who’s responsible for the results. So it would help to know what results you’re shooting for. (And did you notice how cleverly I just alluded to the Cop Rock gun logo with that “shooting” reference? That’s how you know you’re dealing with a master.)

Too often I see “leaders” who just go to work and put in the hours. They go through the motions, but they’ve lost track of the vision. They no longer know what the show is. And that’s not leadership.

Know your show

If you find yourself in that situation (and most of us do, from time to time), then you need to find a way, or ways, to remind yourself of what your show is. Maybe it’s a Post-It® above your computer, maybe it’s a weekly “show briefing” with your team, maybe it’s a check-in call with your coach. But you need to do something that works for you to keep your vision, your show, top of mind.

What do you do to remind yourself what your show is? Please let us know in the comments section below. Be a cool person and share your brilliance!


About the Author:

29-time Emmy Award winner and Hall of Fame keynote speaker Bill Stainton, CSP is an expert on Innovation, Creativity, and Breakthrough Thinking. He helps leaders and their teams come up with innovative solutions — on demand — to their most challenging problems.
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