Chess Not Checkers

Last week, I wrote about the untapped potential and competitive advantage resident in our people. Today, I am excited to introduce my new book, Chess Not Checkers. It is a blueprint for unleashing the talents, passion and creativity of your entire workforce. Although the book will not officially be launched until the first week in April, I couldn’t wait to begin sharing the content. So today will be the first of several posts in which I’ll write about key concepts and best practices for creating a high performance organization!
From the Introduction of Chess Not Checkers
Leading has never been easy. From our first experiment trying to get our classmates to follow us or receiving our first official assignment at work, leadership has always demanded our best effort. That hasn’t changed—but something else has: the complexity of the problems we face and the organizations we lead has increased exponentially.
Perhaps this complexity finds its energy in the scope of your enterprise, or it may merely be a function of increased volume. These are great problems to have . . . if leaders can orchestrate an appropriate response.
Unfortunately, for many leaders, our past successes just don’t translate. The game has literally changed before our eyes. The methods that worked extremely well in the past no longer have the same effect. In many cases, the tried and true has become the tired and tarnished.
Most of us began our leadership journey utilizing an approach with striking similarities to the game of checkers, a fun, highly reactionary game often played at a frantic pace. Any strategies we employed in this style of leadership were limited, if not rudimentary.
The opportunities in our world for leaders to play checkers and be successful are dwindling.
The game today for most leaders can better be compared to chess—a game in which strategy matters; a game in which individual pieces have unique abilities that drive unique contributions; a game in which heightened focus and a deeper level of thinking are required to win.
Although Chess Not Checkers provides a rich metaphor for leaders, it is much more than that. The game of chess contains four specific parallels that can inform and transform any organization seeking new levels of performance. I’ve positioned each of these ideas as a “move” your organization can make to draw closer to your goals. Collectively, these moves can be your blueprint for sustained high performance.
Is it possible you may be playing checkers when the game is chess? If that is your situation, today can be the day you start learning a new game.
It’s your move!
More and about the four moves and the best practices which power them in the weeks to come…[GLS_Shield]


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