Food for Thought-3 Leadership Lessons from Seamus Heaney

Richard's Food for Thought

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1.  Listen to everyone.  Everyone has a story to tell.  Everyone has a unique language-give them a voice.  As a leader, how well we understand that each person on our team or committee has a voice worthy of being heard will determine much about our eventual success.

2.  If you’re telling a story, tell both sides.  You’ve heard the old adage that there are two sides to every story.  Seamus Heaney’s gift was to give words to voices that transcended the sectarian divide in Northern Ireland.  Can we as leaders not only listen evenhandedly but tell stories that defy an easy polarity, stories that unify?

3.  Re-tell the old stories.  Heaney was an accomplished translator of works of both ancient Greek drama and most notably, the Anglo-Saxon epic Beowulf.  Re-telling these ancient myths and legends reminds us of where we come from, of who we are, and why we are…

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