Canada Geese

Canada Geese – Leadership on the Wing

Dave Kinnear 1-On Leadership

Canada Geese

Our Southern California neighborhood is inundated with Canada Geese a couple of times a year. In spring, they fly in to raise their young. In fall, they stop by on their way back north. I’m not at all sure where they go between visits.

Many of my neighbors “hate” the geese. They are noisy, messy and can be aggressive with the small dogs (or big dogs for that matter). One person was annoyed enough that she smacked one of the geese with her broom — and killed it. My understanding is that she was fined $1,000 for the pleasure of acting on her frustration. It seems the Canada Geese are protected outside of specific hunting seasons and regulations.

Change is Inevitable

The thing I find interesting where this bird is concerned is that it has adapted so well to living with human beings. Wherever they can find water and appropriate nesting areas, they settle in — humans or no humans, not a problem! They don’t overthink things. They go about their business. They don’t complain, although they do talk loudly among themselves.

We humans, on the other hand, seem to find it difficult to accept change and adapt ourselves and our organizations to the changing landscape. And many of us take great delight in complaining, loudly. We are about eight years away from the great recession. There is no indication that things are going to “go back to normal.” Yet, I overheard, just this week, a business owner hoping that such would be the case. Huuuummmmm. Thankfully, none of the leaders with whom I work are waiting for things to go back to pre-recession numbers. They have adapted their organizations and their leadership team to the way things are and waste precious little energy digging up the past.

Can’t Go Back

I’m not particularly astute when it comes to politics. I’m told by those who profess to know about such things that much of the angst on the conservative side of the isle is that they want to go back to the 50’s time frame concerning public values. I confess, try as I might, I cannot understand why we would like to go back, even if we could — which we obviously can’t. I grew up in that era. I certainly enjoyed a wonderful life; however, there was as much to complain about then as there is now.

Survival of the Most Adaptable

Evolution shows that it is the most adaptable species that survives. I will agree that it is true we humans are causing things to change much faster than at any other time in history — except maybe as the earth was forming or perhaps when the asteroids were smashing into it. We let the technology genie out of the bottle. We can’t put her back in. The only way to go is forward.

If nothing is changing, then sitting still is just fine. I don’t know about you, but I’ve never experienced a world when things weren’t changing. So I hope the business person I overheard was either joking or complaining for the sake of complaining—or is the last standing Neanderthal resisting reality—journey onward. Adapt or die.