“The wild geese take flight low along the railroad tracks in the moonlight night.” Haiku written by Shiki
The Canada Goose is a wild goose native to the Arctic and Canada, and parts of the US. It has a black head and neck, white patches on the face, and a brownish-gray body. Goose lives for a life span of ten to twenty four years in the wild, and longer in captivity. In 2005, two writers, Farid A. Muna and Ned Mansour wrote a fascinating article entitled, “Leadership Lessons Learned From Canada Geese”. A synopsis of the article, as listed by Emerald Group Publishing Limited, shows that Goose is worth emulating.
“The first lesson is: work as a team: Canada Geese migrate long distances flying in V-formation. This formation results in lesser wind resistance, which allows the whole flock to add around 70 percent greater flying range than if each bird flew alone. Geese find out quickly that it pays handsomely to be team players. Second, wise leadership: when the leader at the apex of the V gets tired, it is relieved by another goose. Leaders rotate, empower, delegate, and even step down when it's in the best interest of the team. How often do we see this taking place among organizational leaders? Wise leaders ensure that their followers are well trained and developed in order to achieve true empowerment and smooth succession processes. Third, humane behavior: if a goose drops to the ground when it gets hurt or sick, two of its colleagues go down with it to take care of it until it either gets healthier or dies. In this fast-paced and competitive age, we seldom see managers going out of their way to help colleagues who are in trouble. In organizations, morale, productivity, and loyalty increase when employees are treated humanely.”
So, how does your team leader measure up to Goose. If you are the leader, are you as compassionate and as wonderful a team player as Goose?