Yesterday I shared the story of Walt Disney’s first, but not well known character Oswald the Lucky Rabbit. It’s a story of determination and audacity. What’s fantastic about the story is that Oswald returned from Universal Studios to the Walt Disney Company in 2006!
I can think of many instances where I questioned if I was trying to hold on to Oswald. Sometimes it was a great idea, a goal or a relationship that wasn’t bad but just fell a half pitch below being extraordinary. The hardest decision I’ve made was to quit my PhD. Program in 2001. I had never quit anything before to the extent that I had never dropped a class in college. To just walk away was foreign and hard to accept. It was the best decision I made. I would love to finish a doctorate degree, but it most definitely won’t be in engineering.
That’s an extreme example. Other examples include times in meetings where I feel my idea is the best and it’s getting sent to the bench because I don’t have the title to push it through. An even worst scenario is when I’m pushing for the sake the team and I’m making no headway. Learning to discern an Oswald situation is a major effort of leadership. It is an effort that continues at every level.
What if Disney got caught up a law suit fighting for Oswald instead of keeping the creative juices going and discovering Mickey? What are you holding on to that is keeping you from moving forward? Or who are you holding on to that’s keeping the team from moving forward?