|Fulfillment@Work: LESSONS FROM GEEESE
May 6, 2000
Welcome to the Fulfillment@Work Newsletter
Published by Joel Garfinkle, Dream Job Coaching
1. Lessons from Geese
2. Quotes of the Week
Lessons from Geese
As each goose flaps its wings, it creates an uplift for the birds that follow. By flying in V formation, the whole flock adds 71% greater flying range than if each bird flew alone. Lesson: People who share a common direction and sense of community can get where they are going quicker and easier, because they are traveling on the thrust of one another.
When a goose falls out of formation, it suddenly feels the drag and resistance of flying alone. It quickly moves back into formation to take advantage of the lifting power of the bird immediately in front of it. Lesson: If we have as much sense as a goose, we stay in formation with those headed where we want to go. We are willing to accept their help, and give our help to others.
When the lead goose tires, it rotates back into the formation and another goose flies to the point position. Lesson: It pays to take turns doing the hard task and sharing leadership. As with geese, people are interdependent on each other's skills, capabilities and unique arrangement of gifts, talents or resources.
The geese flying in formation honk to encourage those in front to keep up their speed. Lesson: We need to make sure our honking is encouraging. In groups where there is encouragement the production is greater. The power of encouragement (to stand by one's heart or core values and encourage the heart and core of others) is the quality of honking we seek.
When a goose gets sick, wounded or shot down, two geese drop out of formation and follow it down to help or protect it. They stay with it until it dies or is able to fly again. Then they launch out with another formation or catch up with the flock.
Lesson: If we have as much sense as geese, we will stand by each other in difficult times as well as when we are strong.
This was transcribed from a speech given by Angeles Arrien at the 1991 Organizational Development Network, based on the work of Milton Olson.
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Quotes of the Week
Acceptance is the art of making the obstacle the path. Therefore, embrace the enemy. This is the lesson of the river guide: face the danger, move towards it, that's where the current is the strongest, and it will carry you around the obstacle. Use it.
~ China Galland
Only by unlearning (comes) wisdom.
~ James Russell Lowell
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