Helen Mac Donald was talking about her latest book ‘H is for Hawk’ on the radio yesterday and she told a story of her meeting a man walking in the city with a parrot on his shoulder. Because she was so fascinated with birds she asked the man ‘why do you have a parrot on your shoulder?’ His answer was quite surprising! “Because I am shy”.
“If you are so shy, why do you draw attention to yourself in such a way?” she asked.
“Because people are interested in the parrot, not in me”.
I think you can already sense where I am headed here…, could this story not also be true for ourselves and our business leaders? We all have parrots (the topics of our influence and power) and people come to see us, primarily, because of our parrot. The important thing for me in leadership and the power to influence, is to not rely too much on our parrots but to ensure we have our own stories; to be wholesome and authentic so that people engage with us, while talking about our parrots!
Have a good week,