Since Soundview released its summary of Mike Figliuolo’s book One Piece of Paper, the response has generated numerous questions into the techniques behind the author’s Maxims Approach to leadership. Attendees were given the opportunity to ask Figliuolo directly during a Soundview Live Webinar last month. However, one question that continues to come up is about the flexibility of an individual’s leadership maxims.
I had the opportunity to ask Figliuolo about this during a Soundview Author Insight interview. When instructed to create a list of guiding leadership principles, I thought it was only natural for people to envision chiseling a list of 10 rules into stone and holding themselves to those ideals for the length of their careers. It also struck me that this was probably not what Figliuolo intended.
When asked about the “solid vs. liquid” nature of one’s leadership maxims, the author replied:
[Maxims] should absolutely change over time. As your context changes, as your experience changes, as you learn, as you grow, your maxims should reflect you at that point in time. I encourage folks as they go through an annual self-appraisal process or end-of-year review that they pull out their maxims, review them and see if they’re still relevant and they still resonate and matter. If you’re changing them over time as you grow, they’re always going to help guide you in the direction you want to head.
Here’s an interesting exercise for your next staff meeting: ask members of your team what maxim guided them 10 years ago and does the same maxim guide them today? The changes can reveal interesting stories of personal growth and professional lessons learned.
Soundview subscribers can hear the complete interview with Figliuolo by logging in to their online library. To learn how you can subscribe and how to obtain downloads of the summary of One Piece of Paper and the Soundview Live Webinar, visit Summary.com.