I caved to social networking peer pressure tonight and went to see The Avengers movie at our local theater. Everyone raved about it and so many people have already seen it more than once, I just couldn't help myself. The New York Times review of the movie said that it was about titanic egos on the same team trying not to fight each other. Sounds like some places I've worked before!
As I sat in my seat in the sold-out theater and took it in, in all it's Marvel glory, I couldn't help but notice all of the nods to leadership styles and techniques on display throughout the film. (Yeah, I know, I am just a laugh a minute. Who thinks about this stuff while watching a superhero movie?!?) Anyway, here are my top five Leadership Lessons Learned from The Avengers (in no particular order):
1. Know your team well and let them play to their strengths whenever possible. You never see Nick Fury micromanaging anyone.
2. Keep your cool under pressure. (obviously this lesson isn't learned from the Hulk) We have Agent Coulson to thank for this one. One. Cool. Dude.
3. Do the right thing, always, especially when the temptation not to is strongest, and empower others to take the high road as well. While Tony Stark may not be known for this noble characteristic throughout all Marvel history, in this particular film he does the right thing when it matters and he challenges the Hulk to harness his own capacity for good as well.
4. Using threats and force to garner a following may be temporarily effective, but it doesn't end well. Loki played this one out for us. The hero in a leadership situation like this one is the person who stands up to such a leader, not the leader him/herself. (LOVED the white haired gentleman who refused to let Loki bully him! I seriously wanted to cheer.)
5. Let your actions speak loudly and inspire trust. Don't tell people to trust you, show them they can. Captain America had one of the best scenes in the movie wherein he was telling the NYPD officers how best to assist in the effort to thwart the alien invasion. He gave them specific instructions and orders and they just stood there in the street looking at him until one of them asked, "Why should I listen to you?" Why indeed! In that moment, several aliens attacked and the officers looked on as Captain America single-handedly took them out. Immediately, the officer who had questioned him, relayed his orders to the rest of the police force and started carrying them out.
What lessons did you pick up from the movie? Or are you one of THOSE people who just go to the movies for fun...and not to find yet another way to analyze life as we know it. :)
Carla Ritz. Proof positive that God uses cracked pots!