How to: Lead in the 21st Century. The Infinite Game. With Simon Sinek.
Last night I went to see an inspirational talk by Simon Sinek at Westminster Hall, London. For those of you who don’t know, Simon Sinek is the Founder and Visionary at Start With Why - he teaches leaders and organisations how to inspire people. What made this even more special was that it was a birthday present from my husband who supports me and my business endlessly in our ambition. It was therefore a wonderful experience both from a personal and professional perspective.
As you can imagine, Westminster Hall is an impressive gig but one that Simon easily filled due to his immense following. The energy in the room was profound.
Simon spoke about the fundamental principles of 21st Century Leadership. He evangelised about the ‘Infinite Game’. Businesses who have ‘just’ cause’ are the ones to keep a torch burning and create legacy.
So what exactly is Finite vs Infinite? Quite simply:
Finite games are played in order to be won, which is where they end……
Infinite games are played so that you can keep on playing.
How do we lead an infinite game? Well there are 5 key components:
A just cause
Courage to lead
A ‘just cause’ is exactly what Royall stands for - we believe it is our purpose for existing.
We take this a step further, however, to ensure that individual purpose matters as much as our corporate purpose. We do this by listening to our team, understanding their personal purpose for existing and working out how the business can support their human needs within the resources we have. We believe this is vital for the cultural health of our organisation. We champion an inclusive behaviour so that everyone can contribute.
‘Trust’ – Simon explained that effective leaders create an environment where people can become their best – a place where they feel the freedom to be honest when they need help. They are in a circle of safety, feeling they can make mistakes and be heard. They ‘love’ their job, and do not fear making decisions themselves and they have control. At Royall, we recognise we need to let go and trust. If we hire great people, we need to be better at letting them make their own decisions and allowing them to do their jobs.
‘Worthy advisory’ - competition reveals our weaknesses and, when our weaknesses are revealed, we can improve. There will be people who are actually better than us, and they could well be in our organisation. We need to learn from them – partner with them. Finding the person who has strengths where you have weaknesses is something to celebrate!
‘Existential flexibility’ - great companies have a fixed cause and a flexible strategy. Why does Royall exist? ‘To lift human and organisational spirit’. We want to inspire as many leaders as we can to be the best versions of themselves, and in turn inspire others to do the same.
‘Courage to lead’ - Simon shared, “it’s embarrassing that we even have to have this on the list.”
Leaders who don’t prioritise the advancement of the just cause are not leaders. From a personal perspective, I believe in having the courage to start before you are ready, and when you might not have all the answers.
What does it mean to live an Infinite life? We all come and go but life continues …. This is what we strive for at Royall.
I am proud that we at Royall have it all covered. We:
have a diverse, eclectic team and leadership
work day to day but also have stretch and breakthrough goals
are on an incredible journey of constant improvement - we don’t rush, we accept every goal hit no matter how small the movement forward, because forward is progress.
that a leader is simply anyone who can help someone else rise, and we are developing a healthy and strong environment so that if the Founder is no longer there the culture lives on
people before profit, longevity, maternal instinct, compassion, trust, and empathy
that adopting heart-count over head-count, happiness, clarity, alignment, and fulfilment should matter as much as the metrics themselves.
If you would like any advice on finding your own purpose as an individual or developing a healthier purpose-driven culture within your organisation, please do not hesitate to engage with me on firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 01243 200077.