The Benefits of Setting Impossible Goals – Why Great Leaders Aim High

Jun 22, 2024 | Uncategorized

The Benefits of Setting Impossible Goals – Why Great Leaders Aim High

We all laugh when Elon Musk misses yet another audacious goal. But is he just a deluded lunatic billionaire or is there more behind him consistently missing his goals?

Flying Machines Which Do Not Fly

In 1895, Lord Kelvin, a brilliant physicist and president of the Royal Society, confidently proclaimed that “heavier-than-air flying machines are impossible.” His statement was rooted in the scientific understanding of the time and reflected a widespread skepticism about human flight.

A few years later in 1903, the New York Times wrote “Flying Machines Which Do Not Fly”. The article said that “it might be assumed that the flying machine which will really fly might be evolved by the combined and continuous efforts of mathematicians and mechanicians in from one million to ten million years”. It was written in response to Samuel Langley’s failed airplane experiment two days prior.

But just 69 days later that same year, the Wright brothers, Orville and Wilbur, proved Lord Kelvin and the NYT spectacularly wrong. Against all odds, they took to the skies with the first powered, controlled flight at Kitty Hawk. Their success wasn’t just a technical achievement; it was a triumph of vision and perseverance.


The Wright brothers with their heavier-than-air flying machine

Dare to Dream Big

The Wright brothers dared to dream big, setting a seemingly impossible goal. They shot for the stars, and though they aimed high, they landed on the moon—metaphorically speaking. This story teaches us a crucial lesson in leadership and innovation: stretch goals are powerful motivators.

As leaders, we must encourage our teams to reach beyond the comfortable and the known. By setting ambitious targets, we inspire creativity, resilience, and breakthrough results. Don’t let the skepticism of the present hinder the possibilities of the future. Embrace the impossible, and watch as your team achieves what once seemed unattainable. Period!

As leaders, we must encourage our teams to reach beyond the comfortable and the known. By setting ambitious targets, we inspire creativity, resilience, and breakthrough results. Don’t let the skepticism of the present hinder the possibilities of the future. Embrace the impossible, and watch as your team achieves what once seemed unattainable. Period!

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