Tortoise and the Hare

Tortoise and hare

Those of us over 40 may be familiar with the children’s fable of a race between a tortoise and a hare. In it, the hare raced ahead, well in the lead, then rested and chatted with other animals, while the tortoise just kept going on. In the end, the tortoise won.

What does this have to do with association leadership? Well, everything. Those leaders who pick one or two significant issues and stick with them will win in the end. Too often we’ve seen leaders/presidents jump form issue to issue or just put out fires. That scores easy short term wins but it doesn’t win the long game. Folks, it’s a marathon, not a sprint!

Louis D. Brandeis said, “Most of the things worth doing in the world had been declared impossible before they were done.” Impossible things take focus, courage, determination and a willingness to be beaten down and criticized. If you have too much on your plate, you’ll never get to the good stuff that has the maximum benefit to your members.

Trust me, as a leader you will be pulled and tugged by members, staff and volunteers to help them solve their problems. Don’t be swayed – stick to your vision and know that the tortoise always wins the race.

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