"'I'm reminded of a plant manager who asked his lead engineer to explain her hiring process. She said, 'Well, we fill a bathtub with water and we offer the applicant a teaspoon, a teacup, or a bucket. Then we ask him or her to empty the tub.' 'I get it,' the manager said. 'A go-getter would use the bucket because it's faster.' 'No,' the engineer said, 'a go-getter will pull the drain plug.'"
--Mary Barra, CEO, General Motors
(Kettering University commencement address, 2013)
Every other Tuesday, womenatliberty.com provides Leadership Tuesdays, a platform for a variety of voices and resources to develop, encourage and strengthen women leaders. Today we are featuring a quote that will make you laugh out loud and think, "what would I have done?".
A person who is interested in bettering themselves and their employees is always seeking opportunities to develop their staff.
Mary Barra's quote provides us with a comical view of a leadership test. More so, it causes us to examine our own ability to think critically and solve problems. So often we get caught up in using a "bucket" approach to solve a problem because that's the tool we have been given. But sometimes you have to allow yourself to think outside of the box and envisioned a solution that does not utilize your current tools. The problem still gets solved, but it is solved in a more efficient way.
Good leaders want their employees to think critically because in the end, the employee is engaged in the organization through their contribution, the organization reaps the benefit of the contribution and the leader is recognized over time for his influence and ability to make great hiring decisions.
Read the quote again and let it inspire you to think how you can develop a similar test that encourages go-getters in the organization. And by the way, how would you solve the problem of the bucket, the spoon and the tub full of water?
For more information on Leadership Tuesdays and WOMEN AT LIBERTY, click here.