The MP mindset

If you want to be an effective leader in this uncertain world, then you need to cultivate what I call the MP mindset – i.e. the ability to see from and understand – though not necessarily agree with – multiple perspectives (MP).

How do you cultivate the MP mindset?

There are several ways to do it.

1. Observe customers

As we outline in Customers Included, you need to get out from behind your desk and observe customers. When you observe customers, you open up the ability to go beyond your own confirmation bias and really see the world from the perspective of your customers. Leaders like Steve Jobs and Warren Buffett understand that the smarter you are the more vulnerable you are to blind spots and the harder you have to work to challenge yourself – that’s why they both got out and spent time with customers.

2. Ask for help from peers

In my next book, I will talk about a second way to cultivate the MP mindset.  I will explore why leaders everywhere need a structured environment with peers where they can ask for help. Asking for help is hard to do and it can be counterproductive in the wrong situations but done well and in the right context it can be transformative. (This is one of the main activities in the Councils).

3. Read

You also need to read. Read, read, read. As Charlie Munger says, he’s never met any successful leader who is not also a voracious reader.

4. Art

You also need to look at art. That’s why I run Slow Art Day – slowing down when you look at art really helps you learn how to see and develop your visual literacy. Plus it’s simply an amazing experience – literally eye-opening.  Art is a fundamental part of the human experience and it should be a regular part of your life.

5. Stories outside your experience

And I would add, you should seek out and watch plays and movies that tell stories outside your experience.

About the Author

Phyl Terry

Phyl Terry, Founder and CEO of Collaborative Gain, Inc., launched the company’s flagship leadership program – The Councils – in 2002 with a fellow group of Internet pioneers from Amazon, Google, and others. Thousands of leaders from the Internet world have come together in the last 15 years to learn the art of asking for help and to support each other to build better, more customer-centric products, services, and companies.

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