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Leadership in Large Organisations

A lot of people ask me about working with a strong leadership in very large organisations from the point of view of someone who works on products.

I developed this understanding where I generally put people on the Creators ↔ Curators spectrum.

Creators are people who brainstorm, generate ideas, manifest them into presentable artefacts and test them. Curators are people with a strong intuition around what would work and what wouldn’t, what is important strategically and what is not.

The product team is a Creator. A Creator needs freedom – freedom to explore and exhaust possibilities without constraints. The leadership is a curator. A curator needs vision, a strong understanding of the market & trends, and strong restraint (very important) – all the qualities we typically associate with good leadership.

Interestingly, it is very difficult to Create and Curate at the same time. Those two are very different functions of the human brain that are difficult to engage at the same time. The role of Creation is to expand, and that of Curation is to cull.

This explains why a very different nature of thinking is required to perform the role of a product team-member compared to that of leadership.


@hvpandya