I created The Leader’s Lens as a way of using photography to help individuals reflect on their leadership style and then share their story as part of a collective experience. It is primarily used as part of a wider leadership programme or event.
Steve Jobs himself was inspired by someone else….
“There’s an old Wayne Gretzky quote that I love. ‘I skate to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been.’ And we’ve always tried to do that at Apple. Since the very very beginning. And we always will.”
“I would study his words and his writings. The day he was released from prison gave me a sense of what human beings can do when they’re guided by their hopes and not by their fears. And like so many around the globe, I cannot fully imagine my own life without the example that Nelson Mandela set.”
We’re all inspired or influenced by someone or something.
Over the years I have found that leaders are often ‘profiled’ using metrics and weighting to determine what kind of leader they are, but the reality is, we are all unique. It is also widely accepted that we develop as humans based on nurture, those people and circumstances that influence us, shape our values and the way we behave.
Leadership style is also unique and has almost certainly been shaped by the things that have inspired and energised us throughout life – see the examples above.
The Leader’s Lens
The Leader’s Lens attempts to capture a person’s influences and style in a single photographic portrait.
They say that a picture is worth a thousand words and through body language, facial expression, and props we can portray the inspirations that have helped to develop the strengths and principles that inform a person’s leadership style.
The images, without words, are often shared and then discussed in groups, in a safe and non-judgemental way, providing a glimpse to what lies behind a person’s style, behaviour and drivers of performance.
This has proved to be a valuable way for teams to understand each other better, which has helped businesses and organisations in times of change and crisis, because they have the knowledge to play to each person’s strengths and motivations.
“It completely changed the way we thought about it each other and how we delegated tasks going forward. We are actually a much closer team than we were before and that is a direct result of the conversations we had during The Leader’s Lens discussions.”
The Leader’s Lens is another example of using photography as a business tool, but it is more than just taking photographs, it’s about coaching a person and collaborating with them to create the right portrait. It also helps that I have been around leaders for 25+ years.
It involves a briefing pre-event, a video call to discuss ideas, and then creating a psychologically safe environment that allows the person to reveal themself in front of camera. It is also great fun.
If you would like to know more about The Leader’s Lens and how you might incorporate it into your next conference, event or programme then please get in touch.