Putting thoughts down in a journal is a useful leadership exercise. When doing so, it is important to include more than what is happening now but also what could go wrong.
This kind of journaling is revealed with the publication of “The Godfather Notebook” that director Francis Ford Coppola kept while making this iconic film. As revealed in an interview with Terry Gross on NPR’s “Fresh Air,” Coppola used the notebook to record his thoughts on the meaning, intention and pitfalls of every scene.
Film directors are leaders on the set. Good ones plan every scene in advance so that they can capture the spirit of the script on screen creatively as well as efficiently.
Management is something like that. Executives are bombarded with many details at any given moment. They must focus with clarity on what is important so they can keep projects on task and on budget.
Organize your thoughts in advance. It will prepare you to take action, be it talking to your team or finding additional resources.
The challenge is to make time to think and document your thoughts as words, pictures or diagrams.
Journaling will sharpen your thinking and, in turn, focus on your leadership on what’s most important.