7th April 2021 by Steve Holyer

Would it surprise you to learn that penguins can fly? Some people say, in books and films, that they feel sorry for these funny birds. People imagine that the birds might feel bad for being flightless.

But here's a magical secret.

All penguins are fully capable of flight.

Not everyone is aware, but penguins are designed for flight, and they never lost their flying abilities! In fact all penguins that have left the nest must fly in order to feed themselves and their offspring. Penguins spend a good portion of their lives flying, and they do it with coherent beauty and grace.

The powerful leadership question was never, "How can these birds fly?The powerful leadership question was always, "Where do these birds fly?"

Penguins are some of the most adaptable creatures on earth, and they have adapted to numerous disruptions to their environment so far. Those are proven outcomes and results. (Unfortunately, the pace of human technology for destructive change has outrun even the penguin's ability to adapt and the penguins may face a sad future.)

Most birds use fluid mechanics to fly through a gaseous medium (air), but penguins self-organised using nature's principles and adapted to apply fluid mechanics to flying through a liquid medium (the oceans).

Ducks, geese and other water-fowl swim in water and fly in the air. Different motions, different principles. Penguins left the air behind to thrive in the southern seas using the same principles and motions of flight to soar underwater exactly like eagles (and sparrows) do in the sky.

Penguins are the only birds who are special enough to fly in water.

They self-organise around their passion and responsibility. Their passion is catching fish and squid and playing with sharks. Their responsibility is reproducing, feeding the young, and keeping the waddle healthy. That passion and responsibility is also what creates disruptive outcomes and results that matter.

The leaders and guides who hold open space for people also unleash the full power of transformation inviting the people (like penguins) to self-organise around their passion and responsibility.

That‘s Open Space Leadership.

Thanks Two Oceans Aquarium in Cape Town
for the video of your flying Rock Hopper Ambassadors