It’s been said that great leaders are made in crisis.

A president’s response in certain critical moments can make or break their presidency – and their legacy.  Who would remember Winston Churchill apart from his role in World War II?

But, since few of us will ever face a crisis of such historical proportions, let me suggest another way to distinguish your leadership.

That’s in how you lead when healthy tensions collide.

Healthy tensions are formed when two worthy objectives appear to be pulling in opposite directions – faster delivery but lower inventory.

The problem is we try to find an either/or answer to a both/and question.

It’s like the little boy that was scared to death every time he encountered the neighborhood junk yard dog.  Should he pray for God to protect him OR to give him courage and confidence in the face of danger?  The answer is YES – to both.

Protection – without courage still leaves him cowering in fear unless something inside him changes to also give him courage.  And clearly courage without protection can be problematic, as well.

Do you want to make the customer happy – or achieve higher profits?

Do you want a full & rewarding career or to be a great mom to your kids?

People that know dogs will tell you the more confidently the boy confronts the dog, the better his chances of being safe and protected.

The happier your customers – the better your odds for increased profits.

The higher your quality – the lower your cost.

Where are you using either/or logic to a both/and challenge?  What’s the higher level common denominator that is a true win/win?