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Would you rather be a big fish in a little pond or a little fish in a big pond?

EKG Pulse Graph with Glowing Blue Line

Our reader poll today asks: Would you rather lead as a big fish in a little pond or a little fish in a big pond?

  • I like leading as the big fish in a little pond: 48.7%
  • I like leading as a little fish in a big pond: 51.3%

Different ways to swim. It seems folks are very evenly split on preferring to be a big fish in a small pond or a small fish in a big one. Each has their benefits and drawbacks. For you big fish, the leadership challenge is making the pond bigger for the benefit of everyone. If you have a position of importance or power, think about how you can expand growth opportunities for everyone around you. For you little fish, consider focusing on your own development and growth. Explore more of that big pond and build your skills and perspectives as you do so. In both situations, it’s not really about your environment or your position in it — it’s about what you do with the opportunities presented to you.

Do you agree with these poll results? Let us know in the comments below!

Mike Figliuolo at thoughtLEADERS, LLC

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These results were originally a SmartPulse poll in SmartBrief on Leadership which tracks feedback from more than 210,000 business leaders. Get smarter on leadership and sign up for the SmartBrief on Leadership e-newsletter.

2 Responses to “Would you rather be a big fish in a little pond or a little fish in a big pond?”

  1. Little fish end up growing up to be bigger fish…but they have to figure out how to survive to get there, find the nutrients to grow, and to learn how to navigate in the environment…

    • BASIL AKERS says:

      In the evolutionary scheme of life, most little fish will be eaten by the bigger fish even though the bigger fish may be dumber, they are more powerful. The little fish, though they may be smarter, are so exhausted by the chase that they just generally give up and are unable to fight against the powerful evolutionary forces of bigger and dumber. If you don’t believe this, just look at who was elected President. Personally I would prefer to be a very smart great white porpoise shark with a tongue sharper than its teeth.

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