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The Master Rules - Part 1

by Rick Baker
On Dec 1, 2011

My second boss taught me `The Golden Rule`.

He explained it this way: He who carries the gold makes the rules.

Some people might have been annoyed...

like...

  • Who does he think he is!
  • The boss thinks he gets to tell me what to do!
  • Huh, we will see about that!

For some reason, I was not annoyed. (It might have had something to do with that little new mouth to feed in our family.)

For some reason, I liked the idea of the boss telling me some rules and telling me what he wanted done. I liked the clarity of his communication too:

  • He was the boss. 
  • I was not the boss. 
  • He carried the gold. 
  • I wanted some of it. 
  • OK - I get it.

For some reason, I embraced the subordinate role...the role of a follower.

While it would be an exaggeration to say I understood any of the details of it at the time, I had a general sense that to be a good leader a person must first be a good follower. And, to be a good follower a person must respect the authority of others. Acceptance alone is not enough. A follower must respect and admire the people who have the authority. I am not talking about admiring every single aspect of the boss` character or admiring every single action the boss does or every decision the boss makes. I am talking about recognition of the fact the boss has some admirable qualities and capabilities. If that were not true then the boss would not be the boss.

Good followers learn from all their bosses: maybe a little, often a lot.

Followers who do not accept, respect, and at least to a degree admire authority do not learn from their bosses.

Followers who do not learn from their bosses do not become leaders.

The Master Rules - Part 1: He who carries the gold makes the rules.

 

Master rules - Part 2

Tags:

Delegation & Decisions | Master Rules

Comments (4) -

rick baker
12/29/2012 5:41:06 PM #

"Expectations are very different from incentives. In any organization people are very good at playing the 'game' the way they perceive the 'rules' to be written."

"What behaviour is rewarded? What behaviour is ignored?"

"Within an organization the 'game' is called 'culture'. Sometimes the culture is set by leadership. A dynamic leader can really change a culture. Sometimes the culture has been built up over a number of years. A new leader may try to change the culture but nothing really happens apart from a few cosmetic changes."


Edward de Bono
'Teach Yourself To Think', 1995

rick baker
5/21/2013 7:36:51 PM #

"People are very good at playing the game that is required of them at the moment. But the rules of the game have to be clearly spelled out."

Edward de Bono
'Six Action Shoes', (1991)

rick baker
8/14/2013 10:05:40 PM #

"A state is better governed which has few laws, and those laws strictly observed."

Rene Descartes
French Philosopher & Mathematician, (1596-1650)

rick baker
9/24/2015 8:53:16 PM #

"I had three rules for my players: No profanity. Don't criticize a teammate. Never be late."

John Wooden - Basketball Coach UCLA (1910-2010)

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