Franklin Delano Roosevelt: “Don’t confuse what people in Washington are saying for what people in the country are feeling.”
The 32nd president of the United States, Roosevelt was also one of the most loved by the people for his common sense and caring. This quote came as the result of a caution he issued to his cabinet and his aides. He realized how easy it was to live in a bubble of power and authority and be disconnected from reality. I see this frequently in business when leaders create an atmosphere of quiet acceptance in which people are intimidated and do not speak out, other than to agree. The shame of it is that people shut down and do not feel comfortable introducing a new thought, or—heaven forbid—actually disagreeing with what the leader says. You might argue that the reason the leader feels this way, is that she has been successful. Okay, I’ll give you that. It’s especially relevant if you like the status quo. But, if you want to continue to grow—yourself and the business—you will need honest input. In other words, I agree you have been successful, but how successful could you be?
Good luck on your journey!