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Saturday, October 18, 2014

Leadership Requires Vulnerability

I went to a leadership retreat last month. We did a variety of team-building activities, including outdoor challenges, as part of a process to get know ourselves and each other better.

I'll write about this group in a later post, but for now I'll simply say that I'm fortunate to be part of a group of such interesting individuals. My fellow 34 classmates are talented, creative and passionate leaders.

One of the key things I took away from the weekend was that it's very important to be vulnerable even while you lead. Personally, I found myself (the talkative girl) taking a quieter role of observer and speaking into situations when necessary.

But even I could never had guessed the level of vulnerability that I'd have to face during the retreat.

Yes. That happened.

Short story: Group effort to get over a 14-foot vertical wall when my trousers were grabbed rather than my leg. Riiiiiiiiiip - waistband to bend of knee.

Talk about being vulnerable.

Exposed and hanging 14-feet off the ground, with only the hands of three suddenly-less-strangers holding me securely.

All I could say was:

The objective is to get me over the wall!

So they did. And we all survived.

And I laughed - and laughed and laughed. It's not often that you bare almost-it-all in a group that's been acquainted for less than 30 hours.

I suppose you could say that leadership requires vulnerability and a good sense of humor.

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