Sunday, March 4, 2012

Angelina's right leg, other OMG's and WTF's

Angelina Jolie's right leg wanted to stand out on its own on the Oscar stage. Well, it is a couple of weeks past the Oscar ceremony, and the right leg is still standing out there on its own in photographs, cartoons and every possible media outlet. So much so that it found its way into my blog now. It gives immense joy to some seeing it make a naked fool of itself. It provides solace to some others that a leg is a leg is a leg, whether it is Angelina Jolie's or some Tom, Dick and Harry's. And it provides teeth to many fashion critics to chew on another tibia bone of contention. 

Now here is a leg that has its own twitter account and overnight, has created a life of its own. Everyone wants to stand out in his or her own way, everyone is looking for their few minutes of fame, everyone is looking to be instantly valued. So, why can't Angelina's right leg do that? But then, it is worth the debate on what one would do to grab that headline and what actually grabs the headline these days. Would you grab a headline at the cost of your happiness and inner peace of mind? In today's extrovert friendly world, there are many folks who wonder if only gimmicks sell in the world? I have heard many colleagues at workplace ask the question if quiet dedication and consistent results working in the shadows is less valued than the suave and bashful headline grabber who is glib and smooth? Are we increasingly in search of the overnight matinee idol when all you need is a good script and fine actors? The world has some collective thinking to do. Elections are being won based on the oratory skills of contestants, not on the dogged hard work of the reformers. News is being sold on the sensationalism of Page 3 stories, not the true heartwarming stories of hoi polloi. And so it begs the question, is this society about Angelina's right leg, other OMG's and WTF's? Or will it reward the consistency of the hard work and toil,  the blood and sweat ?

For an over-"news"-ed yet uninformed society today, it is time to focus on building the solid, the scalable, the lasting. It is time to build that which lasts, it is time to buy that which lasts. I remember in the old days, when my folks were buying, they would look at durability first and everything else later. Today, we are taken in by the fancy and the fleeting, but it's time to change. Jim Collins, the management thinker and Level 5 leader proponent, states in his book, " There is a direct relationship between the absence of celebrity and the presence of good-to-great results." It is time for such leadership in civil society too. Not celebrity, but true defining leadership. It is time for the solid and durable versus the fancy and the fleeting. Don't you think?

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