Adam Bryant of Merryck and Co. recently published a terrific interview with Bracken Darrell, CEO of Logitech. I especially liked this exchange. We all should think about this reflection exercise. Darrell "fired himself" and started anew in the very same role, but with fresh perspective. Here's an excerpt:
How do you set the tone for constant change given that people crave a certain amount of sameness?
I’m very explicit about it. I’ve shared a story from last year, after I’d been on the job for five years. One Sunday night, I asked myself, “Am I the right person for the next five years?” I had made tons of change, and the stock was up about 500 percent.
I knew that, on paper, I probably was the right person for the next five years, and that it’s risky to change if you don’t have to. On the other hand, I had been involved in every single personnel and strategic decision. My disadvantage was that I knew too much, and that I was too embedded in everything we were doing.
So I decided that I was going to fire myself, and that I would sleep on the decision. I didn’t share it with anybody, including my wife or kids. I just thought to myself that I might be done. I woke up the next morning, and felt that I knew exactly what I needed to do: I have to rehire myself but have no sacred cows. It was super exciting and fun, and I started changing things that I had put in place. Fortunately, I didn’t have to change things radically, but I felt new again.
Then I realized that the real opportunity is to compress that timeframe from five years to a year and then to a month and then into every day. And if you can get yourself to the point where you can really come in unbiased every day, then you’re there. That’s my ultimate goal, which I think is impossible, but that’s the goal.