I see this wolfpack explanation of leadership in my Linkedin feed everyday and even though it’s an internet hoax, it still represents an easy way to explain the way a lot of companies are currently being run and why they are bleeding talent. So besides the noble leadership definition people of the internet appointed to this picture, let’s take a look at what the wolves are really trying to say…

First group: The old and slow ones lead the pack (boardroom), don’t look back and have no feeling with what is happening within the group. They only see the path they have been following for ages and presume everybody agrees and wants to continue following that same path. They are working hard and feel like leaders, because they are clearing the path through the snow for the rest of the group, making their life easier. Not taking the time to realize Uber is available in their territory.

The second group: This group is middle management. Their focus lies on the first group, to make sure they keep up with them, filter negativity coming from the back and making sure they stay as close to the first group as possible. Keeping wolves in the first group with good intentions blind and deaf to innovative ideas coming from the rear.

The big group: These are the general employees. Mostly fed up with the way things are being run. Not getting the feeling they are being heard. Complaining at the wolfy coffee machine, but not really making any change themselves what so ever.

The last group: These are the actual leaders in the company. Employees that want to break with the old ways and want to form a new movement within the company, but are still figuring out how they can break through conservative walls and get the message to the wolves up front. Motivated, with a touch of frustration, but determined to make a change.

The last wolf: Call him a coward, a disruptor or even an entrepreneur. He is the one taking a step back and taking the time to see the whole group and assess if this is still the best way of working. He will have to decide if he stays within the company and lead the last group of promising progressive thinkers or break with the establishment and start his own pack (read: company). The decision of this last wolf also determines if the last group is going to break away with him (talent jumping ship) or will join forces to make the change internally. He will be the first signal of a crumbling organization. By the time the first group notices what is going on in the back, a rival pack is already taking over the hunting territory.