Overall I’m a big kid at heart. If you look at the image I’m showing here you’ll see a corner of my room that’s consumed with a host of stuffed animals and other items. I didn’t buy a single one of these; all have been accumulated over the years as gifts from others, including the picture to the right which you might not be able to see.
One of my favorite characters of all time happens to be Kermit the Frog. Kermit the Frog also happens to be one of the best leaders in history. Many people may not see it that way because I’ve found folks that become adults look at things like this and only see one thing. When they dig deeper, they might find that things are way more complex than they might have ever imagined, kind of like the post I wrote on Harry Potter a few weeks ago.
With that post I gave 10 reasons why Harry Potter was a great leader. In this one I’m only going to cover 5 reasons, though I could cover many more. Least of which is a book Kermit wrote some years ago titled It’s Not Easy Being Green; how many frogs do you know that have written books? 🙂 It’s also a book on motivation and leadership; how apropos! Let’s take a look at these 5 things then.
1. Kermit always stays true to the cause. Kermit always knows what his overall goal is, that being to entertain the audience. There’s nothing he won’t try or try to provide for the audience to bring joy to their world. Sure, sometimes some of the things he allows fails, but every once in awhile there will be a moment where they’ll knock one out of the park and it’ll be memorable from that time on.
2. Kermit understands the need for diversity. Man, does he ever understand diversity and its benefits. Frogs, pigs, bears, penguins, monsters, humans, and whatever else you can come up with. Everyone gets an opportunity to contribute, and he finds the best of all, sometimes some of their worst as well, and uses everyone equally.
3. Kermit knows how to work with different personalities. And he’s pretty seamless at it. There’s the overly confident Miss Piggy; the overly ambitious Gonzo; the less than confident comedian in Fozzie Bear; the staunch conservative Sam the Eagle; the overly flamboyant Dr. Teeth; and the overly animal Animal. He allows each personality to manifest itself as long as the whole works, but when he has to he’ll bring everyone in line with the overall mission because, in the end, it’s not about each person but about the greater good.
4. Kermit makes the best with the talent he himself has. Okay, let’s face a fact here; Kermit isn’t the greatest singer or dancer in the world. He’s not the best comedian. For the most part neither are most of the acts he employs. Yet that doesn’t stop him or any of the rest of them from getting out there, doing the best they can, and succeeding more often than not. He understands that it’s not perfection that people clamor for (other than Statler & Waldorf), it’s the effort, and that a group effort will often bring more satisfaction to more people than perfection ever could.
5. Kermit is a selfless leader. When all is said and done, when people come to him and tell him how great he is, he always deflects it to the others around him. He didn’t put on a great show, everyone put on a great show. Everyone gave their best effort; he was just a part of the overall experience. He didn’t sign the big rich and famous contract for himself; he made sure everyone got a piece of it. And then he went and brought even more, uhhh, “friends” in to enjoy the experience, to have their moment in the sun.
Who wouldn’t want to work with someone like Kermit the Frog every day?