Horizon Newsletter • April 14, 2021
Stoic leadership is the secret.

I've worn glasses since fifth grade. Mr. Robinson noticed me squinting at the chalk board in math class and called my Mom. The prescription was always strong. I doubt I ever saw well.

I didn't wear those glasses in junior high. They looked fine - it wasn't that. Blurry vision made my skin look clear, and that made me feel attractive. I had average complexion, but that's not saying much. I preferred my pimple-less fantasy to acceptance and action.

Seeing is believing (if you can bear it)

Increased visibility usually leads to positive change. But first… denial, anger, bargaining, depression, acceptance, and hard work.

We spend our youth creating an identity, and the rest of our lives defending it. Alternative ideas and narratives threaten every facet. Paul Graham says to "Keep Your Identity Small", and I keep trying.

The identity of an organization is its "culture" and "brand". Organizations protect their identities from external threats, for better and worse.

Analytics are like mirrors - seductive, fickle, and unforgiving. Glimpse triumph and endure the never-ending ugly battle against entropy.

Analytics are indifferent to the narrative, and insensitive to our identity.

Analytics are uncooperative and curt, talking over our stories.

Analytics are critical. We must be positive.

The visibility that XBE provides to all aspects of job performance is powerful and scary. Guide your organizations to the truth. Be understanding and generous. Acknowledge the differences between what they see and what you've said. Do not want good news or fear bad news.

Stoic leadership is the secret.

Let me know if you struggle to maintain this balance. Let me know if you don't!


Sean Devine
Founder & CEO, XBE