The Wrong Message for Tomorrow's Leaders
At Shannon’s high school graduation, the top grads got a chance to make their speeches to family, friends, and faculty before going out into the future to change the world.
Back in 1980, when I graduated, I made a long speech that was quite dramatic in presentation and was very different from what was expected, but at the same time, quite successful. I was disappointed enough in Shannon’s classmates’ speeches to verbalize it to her. I just couldn’t believe how bland and boring they were.
That’s when she informed me that the top of her 500+ class—the best and brightest, according to GPA—had been given explicit instructions about the content of their speeches and even then, there had been changes made to the brief speeches the grads had submitted for approval until they were appropriately dumbed down for mass consumption.
The order they were given?
“Don’t stand out.”
Yeah, that’s exactly the kind of message we want to give our future leaders, isn’t it!