Thursday, 12 July 2012

What-Q?: The meaning of "smart"

I have come to terms (begrudgingly) with the following statements: Gone are the days of Yo Mama jokes. Gone are the days of Yak Baks. Gone are the days of Nano Pets and Tamagotchis... but I can honestly say that I never thought I would have to come to terms with: "Gone are the days of IQ".

But it's happening. As hard as it was to stop singing "colours of the world, spice up yo life!!" into my Yak Bak, it is going to be even harder for all of us to wrap our heads around the fact that the concept of being "smart" is changing and increasing in complexity.

When we were young, being smart was synonymous with the dorkus at the front of the class wearing flood pants and a science camp t-shirt (I can say this because I WAS THAT DORKUS). But, now that we are growing and becoming aware of the world outside of sweaty portables, being smart means so much more. This can be daunting and even a little unsettling, but I like to see it as a wonderful opportunity. Since the definition of intelligence is evolving, it is becoming more accessible to everyone ... especially leaders.

Every day, every moment, every interaction provides us with an opportunity to grow our leadership intelligence. What is leadership intelligence? You might ask ... Well, I promise it won't be as confusing as trying to get your Tamagotchi to shut up at 3am. To me, leadership intelligence definitely involves the new traits like emotional intelligence (EQ or EI) and cultural intelligence (CQ), but it also involves a LOT more...

It's our ability to act professionally at the office but still have (responsible) fun outside of the office. It's our ability to manage our own personal health and wellness - mentally, physically, emotionally and socially. It's our ability to be kind and compassionate. It's love. It's sharing. It's admitting our faults and celebrating our successes. It's being accepting and open-minded. It's trying new things and taking risks. It's play. It's hard work. It's dedication. It's doing something out of the goodness of your heart, just to see a smile on someone else's face. It's please. It's thank you. It's big bear hugs that have the power to change your day in one fleeting moment. It's high fives. It's sending an email to someone just to tell them that you think they're doing a great job... I could go on for days...

If I can sum it up in one phrase for you ... Leadership Intelligence is founded by awareness, and built through acting on that awareness in order to make the world around you a better place. 

As we redefine the concept of intelligence, we open a world of possibilities for our leadership and our ability to make change. If we all pledged to get a little bit "smarter" every day ... I truly believe that we could make this world a better place.

"A good head and a good heart are always a formidable combination." - Nelson Mandela

1 comment:

  1. I have recently been made aware that the lyrics for Spice Up Your Life are, in fact, NOT "colours of the world..." I am feeling some serious embarrassment for 10-15 year old me.