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Who Moved My Cheese??


November 21, 2017

Valuable lessons from Who Moved My Cheese.

So here again, here are my thoughts on a short read (just 94 whole pages) with powerful messages full of leadership lessons.

A story of Two Mice and Two Men, live and survive in a maze and struggle to find enough cheese to survive the big scary world.

CHEESE? What does this have to do with Leadership?

Obviously, the Cheese is not just Cheese. The Cheese stands for everything you aspire for in life. And I mean what a good reference point, doesn't everyone love a good bit of cheese. The Cheese encompasses everything life throws at us and what we aim to achieve the right balance of career, success, money and love.

So the story is a tale of how people handle (or do not handle) change. Handling change is the scary thing about life, knowing how to cope with changes is a necessary part of life and is a valuable leadership skill.

Successful leadership is accepting that change is evolution and is, in fact, a positive thing (or at least can be looked at positively).

We all come and go, Employees come and go, clients and customers come and go, projects have an end and evolve into something else. But to ensure we all survive and continue to grow and develop we need to become a leader, a leader that has clear and constant vision. We all need to work together consistently and move towards the same long-term goal, no matter what change is thrown at us. We need to survive. So as a leader, the sooner it is understood positivity and not anxiety is a key to survival the sooner the leader can instil the acceptance of change in others.

So what key lessons have I took away from this story as it unfolded?

  1. Remember that old beliefs do not lead you to new cheese: Being complacent leads to extinction. Embracing change and being flexible as a boss leads to survival.

  2. Don’t over-analyze or over-complicate things: Keep the true and tried mantra of K.I.S.S. in mind. Too many leaders take too long to convey a simple message.

  3. Go past fear and enjoy the journey of finding new cheese: Embrace the thrill of the hunt, be curious, and push the envelope. This is your job as a leader.

  4. Let go of old behaviour instead of letting go of the situation: A different viewpoint can often help a situation more than a change of scenery.

  5. If you don’t change you’ll become extinct: It’s ok to Pivot as needed, or else you’ll be caught without any options.

  6. Consider what you might do if you weren’t afraid: This is a key takeaway as fear holds you back and prevents you from moving forward.

  7. Smell the cheese often so you know when it’s getting old: In life and in business timing is everything.

  8. Move beyond the fear and feel free: Don’t be afraid to be a leader and take the first step.

  9. Imagine yourself enjoying the new cheese even before you find it: It’s important to visualize an end goal as it will speed up reality.

  10. Let go of old cheese quicker so you can find new cheese sooner: When it’s time to let go, be sure to let go.

  11. Notice little changes early and help yourself adapt to bigger changes later: While practice really can make things perfect, it is even more important to keep an eye out for early signs of change.

Finally a valuable lesson from me... If you haven't read the book. Do so... you won't regret an indulgence in cheese.

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