Once in a while, I like to look at something in a different way, and pull leadership lessons from unexpected sources. These are lighthearted views into leadership lessons, from places that are not your usual sources of leadership inspiration. Alex Knapp at Forbes had the same idea, and wrote about 5 leadership lessons from James T Kirk:
1. Never Stop Learning
No matter what your organization does, it helps to never stop learning. The more knowledge you have, the more creative you can be. The more you're able to do, the more solutions you have for problems at your disposal. Sure, you might never have to face down a reptilian alien on a desert planet, but you never know what the future holds. Knowledge is your best key to overcoming whatever obstacles are in your way.
2. Have Advisors With Different Worldviews
Organizations that allow for differences of opinion are better at developing innovation, better at solving problems, and better at avoiding groupthink. We all need a McCoy and a Spock in our lives and organizations.
3. Be Part Of The Away Team
When you're in a leadership role, it's sometimes easy to let yourself get away from leading Away Team missions. When you lose that perspective, it's that much harder to understand what your team is doing, and the best way to get out of the problem. At the same time, be careful of lead-manage-do.
4. Play Poker, Not Chess
For all of its intricacies, chess is a game of defined rules that can be mathematically determined. Chess isn't about strategy; it's about position. A far better analogy to strategy is poker, not chess. Life is a game of probabilities, not defined rules. And often understanding your opponents is a much greater advantage than the cards you have in your hand. In other words, successful leadership often relies on strong interpersonal skills.
5. Blow up the Enterprise
Kirk was very passionate about the Enterprise. We are often, in our roles as leaders, driven by a passion. But no matter how much that passion burns within us, the reality is that times change: different products are created, different ways of doing things are developed. And there will come times in your life when that passion isn't viable anymore, when it no longer makes sense to pursue your passion. When that happens, no matter how painful it is, you need to let go - to blow up the Enterprise. Change what isn't working and embark on a new path, even if that means having to live in a Klingon ship for awhile.