In my daughter’s room we have a canvas that our friend Aubrey created for us. It is an inspiration piece that includes a great quote from Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. Now I am going to take a shot in the dark and say this is the first blog you have read which pulls in Willy Wonka for a leadership thought – but Wonka has some gold for us (and I do not mean a golden ticket).
The print in our daughter’s room reads, “We are the music makers, we are the dreamers of dreams.” Now I know the quote actually belongs to a British poet, but the reason most of us might know that line is from Wonka. I love the quote because it is an invitation – it entices us to consider “what could be?” The starting point for growing a team is the development of a New Dream.
So how do you get a new dream? It is not something you can just will into being. While there are a lot of things a leader can just “make happen,” getting a new dream is not something you can force. However there are 3 things I believe every leader needs to have the best chance at gaining a new dream:
Space – dreaming does not happen under pressure, it requires breath and room to slowly develop. Find a space that allows you the creativity and flexibility to dream. For me it is usually an out of the way coffee shop with lots of traffic and lots of vibe. Others enjoy lots of whiteboards, or being out in nature. Find the space that is most conducive for you to dream.
Time – dreaming does not happen alongside other calendar events. Along with space, you need set aside time for the sole purpose of dreaming. This is especially hard for the type A people like myself. This is the hardest requirement for me, because after a few minutes of dreaming I think, “alright I’m ready to just get something done!” Inspiration can happen in a moment in-between appointments, however acquiring a new dream will require you to set time on your calendar.
Passion – dreaming is driven by passion. Remember the question that causes us to dream is, “what could be?” Most of us keep our lives busy enough that we do not have time to consider “what could be” unless it has to do with something we care about. Your passion is the fuel that ignites the fire of a new dream. There are many things in life that we will keep at the status quo, because we do not have the drive to change them. Passion causes us to desire more than the status quo, it allows us to consider future possibilities.