Ducks Aren’t Dogs


Ducks Aren’t Dogs. What Development Can’t Do.

What do you get when you teach a duck to bark? “Quack!”

Just like you can’t make a duck act like a dog, stop trying to make extroverted people act like introverts, or vice versa.

Instead, help extroverts use their gift of gab at the right time and know when to just listen. (And stop quacking.)

Likewise, stop making introverts act like extroverts. Help them use their gift of thoughtful reflection. And help them know when they really must speak up and share their insights.

How do you teach a duck to be a great duck?  That is, how to you help someone become the best version of themselves?   Answer: It takes a combination of  self-awareness training, situational awareness training, and pure ol’ fashion development.

The perils of duck hunting are great – especially for the duck.
Walter Cronkite

And don’t confuse training with development.  Both are important when used correctly, but they’re not the same thing. Training is all about learning content.

Development is all stretching yourself, and putting ideas into action.  Development is about learning by doing.

Without leadership development, a duck is going to be stuck in his little ol’ head.  Stuff gets lost up there in that little peanut organ. (What do you remember from that last Harvard Business Review article?  Me neither.)

And without leadership training (i.e., great content, great delivery), a duck won’t figure out what he needs to do.  He’ll just go on quacking at the wrong times.

So basically, help dogs bark and the right time, and ducks quack at the right time with a perfect blend of training (content) and pure developmental (experiential learning).


About Curt Buermeyer

I am the founder and president of LeadPeople. I hope you enjoyed this post and encourage you to subscribe to receive these in your inbox. Thanks for visiting!

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