HOW TO CREATE PERSONAL LEADERSHIP VALUE –
The leadership crash course
Be a manager or a leader
● Understand the difference between managing and leading people.
● Assess your own preference for either managing or leading.
● Understand why leadership is so important and valued today.
● Learn how leadership is different in the new globally connected business environment.
● Be clear on how to take the six modules of the Leadership Crash Course.
MODULE 1.1: THE BIG DIFFERENCE
The world is full of managers and desperately short of leaders – real leaders. Organizations all over the world spend hundreds of millions every year training people to be better managers but struggle to develop enough leaders. Sure, we need both managers and leaders – the skills of managing are valuable, indeed essential, in making things happen and keeping work on track – but they are far outweighed by the demand for leadership skills in today’s world.
Psychological research has shown what we all intuitively know: under circumstances of uncertainty or unusual challenge and difficulty, people look for help in understanding questions about what matters, what to do, what direction to take, and what they should not do. Providing people with the answers that help them with these difficult questions is the essence of leadership
MODULE 1.2: CAN I LEARN TO BE A LEADER?
That’s the good news. Anyone can learn leadership skills and can be successful in leading others. That’s not to say that it’s easy. Nor is there is a simple and mechanistic programme of training that will transform you from a supervisor
into a chief executive, from an employee with big ideas into a billionaire entrepreneur, from a talented athlete into an inspirational team coach, or from a government bureaucrat into a charismatic political heavyweight. Learning to be a leader,
like most things, takes effort and application, practice and dedication – and not simply training. You don’t learn leadership in a classroom. And, most importantly, it takes a particular human quality that turns many people off the challenge:
courage, the courage to change yourself, to try things, to experiment, to risk making mistakes and risk failures.
UNCOMFORTABLE LEADERSHIP LESSON NO. 1. -CHANGE YOURSELF BEFORE YOU TRY TO CHANGE OTHERS The measure of true leadership is being able to get people to do things they didn’t want to do or didn’t expect they could do. But learning to be a leader is about learning to change yourself first before you try to change others
MODULE 1.3: DO YOU PREFER TO BE A LEADER OR A MANAGER?
During the course of your development as a person, as you grew up, went to school, started work and so on,
you came to behave in wa ys that were typically you – your personality, if you like. For a few people, some of these ways of behaving are exactly the sorts of behaviour that would make them ‘natural’ leaders – not natural in the sense that they are born leaders (no one is born a leader) but in the sense that they are very comfortable behaving that way. For others, their normal and comfortable ways of behaving are some way off the types of behaviour that make for effectiveness as a leader – in short, they have more to learn
MODULE 1.4: SO WHAT IS LEADERSHIP?
leadership was ‘one of the most observed and least understood phenomena on earth’. ● The easy answer: leadership is getting people to do things they have never thought of doing, do not believe are possible or that they do not want to do.
● The leadership in organizations answer: leadership is the action of committing employees to contribute their best to the purpose of the organization. ● The complex (and more accurate) answer: you only know leadership by its consequences
– from the fact that individuals or a group of people start to behave in a particular way as a result of the actions of someone else.
The true measure of your success as a leader is not the boldness of your intentions, the quality of your presentations and speeches, the strength of your relationships with people, or the extent to which you are liked by your team; rather, it is your success in moving people to follow your lead
Managers Control Risk, React, enforce rules and procedures, Seek and follow directions and coordinate efforts while Leaders take risk, seek opportunities, change rules, provide something to believe in and inspire achievement.
‘high-performance managers’: are truly fantastic at being managers, they impress the people who work for them, earn the praise of their peers and bosses and rise rapidly up the management ladder. But they are unable to lead: regrettably, in enterprises where there is a preponderance of highperformance managers, the organizational culture tends to fall into a spiral of being over-managed and under-led
MODULE 1.5: LEADERSHIP VALUE
Civilization as a whole is founded on the notion of structure and organization of people and their efforts. The Romans, like their forebears, also knew that individual ‘leaders’ made a huge, sometimes crucial, difference to the incremental value that structure and organization offered. This value was usually defined as ‘morale’ or ‘pride’ or ‘courage’ and was most vividly measured in battle when even outnumbered or poorly organized troops might be inspired to unlikely valour and sacrifice, winning victory against the odds
In its purest sense, therefore, the motive force of leadership acts at the emotional and sometimes irrational level
individual leaders all over the world
make a difference by:
● persuading disparate factions to pursue common cause;
● providing a sense of achievement and motivation to succeed that structure and organization cannot; calling on commitment to action or even sacrifice by individuals to benefit the team or enterprise;
● inspiring people to overcome seemingly impossible obstacles;
● creating excitement and ambition to perform at a higher level;
● engendering hope among people who are despairing
Indeed, for almost everyone in the world, it is subjective experiences that are the most important for them – the feeling of confidence that comes of having overcome impossible odds, the dignity of contributing to a meaningful or important enterprise, the sense of achievement in success or learning something new, the satisfaction of having done the best for one’s family, team or business or having gained the esteem of colleagues. At the same time, leadership value is intensely practical – because it moves things forward, it creates action, it changes the world, it increases the likelihood of growth, attainment and success
leaders must perform a difficult trick – they must coherently and convincingly link an individual’s actions, aspirations and hopes, in tandem with the actions, aspirations and hopes of tens, hundreds or even thousands of other individuals, to this overarching purpose
MODULE 1.6: THE LEADERSHIP DOMAIN… OR HOW TO BE A LEADER
As a leader you must:
● impose or set the context (making it clear what matters);
● make risks and take risks;
● challenge and change;
● have deep conviction;
● generate critical mass (make things happen at scale).
First off, imposing context means you must make it absolutely clear what is important in the enterprise, what its direction and goals are, where it has come from and where it is going, what your values as the leader are and, by extension, how they fit with the values of the enterprise, and therefore what is expected of your people
Certainly people need to know what direction to take, where their future lies or what they might aspire to, but this over-focus on the future neglects two elements crucial to people: their history and where they are now. Individuals rarely understand what action to take or how they should change unless they can perceive the thread that links a vision of the future with their current situation as well as where they have come from.
Leaders are distinguished by their ability to both seek out and create opportunities and then turn these opportunities into
advantages or results. Risk can and should go hand-in-hand with management rigour and discipline
People are fearful, apathetic, cynical, sceptical, stuck in a rut, or simply trapped in the workaday grind of the status quo.
It’s been done before. It’ll never work. It can’t be done.’ So do something different. Be unpredictable. Ask your people to challenge you and change the way things are done.
If you have deep conviction but never show it, you cannot lead others. Leaders do change their mind, but once they
commit to a decision, they put their conviction on the line. Be single-minded, excited by the future, fervent, determined, totally resolved
There must be a beginning of any great matter, but the continuing unto the end, until it be thoroughly finished, yields the true glory.’ So channel the available energy .. into tasks that make a difference.
This also requires you to influence people – to get them to do things they may not want to do, to join you in achieving something that is not self-evidently in their own interests, to adjust their viewpoint or their ideals and fall in behind you.
WHAT /HOW and WHY …As a leader you must:
Impose context…by concentrating people’s attention on what matters …in order to: ● give people a direction to
take or an aspiration to pursue ● show individuals what the key goals are ● make sure people always have a sense of
proportion and can distinguish day-to-day between what actions are important and those that are not
Make risks and take risks…by understanding what opportunities exist, or can be created, and then converting them into results…in order to: ● pre-empt the otherwise hidden or unexpected risks that might damage the enterprise ● take advantage of opportunities for success in the present or future ● create new ways of doing things that are beneficial, advantageous or profitable ● expose yourself and your people to new situations that develop thinking and skills
Challenge and change…by experimenting and being adventurous… in order to: ● grab people’s attention ● energize your followers
● take competitors by surprise ● jolt your people, from time to time, out of accepting things as they are, to prevent the ordinary becoming all that they believe is possible
Have deep conviction…by being fervent about the things you want to achieve…in order to: ● guide your decisions ● inspire people to follow you ● overcome the inevitable barriers and obstacles ● have the courage to stand your ground ● build self-belief in your
Generate critical mass…by influencing people and turning knowledge into action…in order to: ● channel your people’s energy into the
appropriate activities ● mobilize all your people to work together in a coordinated way (rather than in an individualistic, haphazard manner) ● make things happen
MODULE 1.7: LEADERSHIP BY E-MAIL -‘24/7 globally connected world’
In Telephones Human interaction depends on our ability not only to communicate, but also to avoid communicating certain things or getting too intimate. In mails The range for non-verbal expression is zero and tonal expression is severely curtailed
Personal contact is important.. However, getting to know people and building trust with them is difficult, if not impossible, if you never meet them or, from time to time, renew the face-to-face contact. People prefer to interact and work with others whom they can understand and trust
Especially where work is based more and more on rapid formation, recombining and break-up of temporary teams, or where change is a constant factor and where you have the advantage to do work faster and more effectively if talented people can collaborate quickly because they already know and trust one another.
Use e-mail primarily for rapid communication of essential documents
Make it clear to your colleagues and staff how you expect e-mail to be used
Avoid as much as possible the appalling habit of copying dozens of people on each email.
Where you are using e-mail, be very sensitive to the often alarming emotional readings that recipients make of symbols and emoticons
Never assume that, or let yourself drift into an ongoing situation where, e-mail is your prime mode of communication. continue to have high levels of personal, eyeball contact with your people, their peers and their bosses.
If you have no opportunity for face-to-face interaction, the telephone is a much better
alternative to e-mail if you are trying to lead people –maintaining and building relationships and regularly reminding people of overall goals and how their work contributed -‘How are things going? How can I help? Any problems?’
MODULE 1.8: HOW TO GET THE BEST OUT
Learn what leadership means-often people forget the first step and try to leap ahead
Be honest and open with yourself. –do not walk away from the tough questions
Concentrate on behaviour. feelings and attitudes depend on this
Focus first on your strengths-Know them use them
Work on your weaknesses over time It’s not too difficult to stop doing things and is much harder to start new behavior
Try simple tricks and tips Simple things can make a big difference
Learn from the mistakes others make. what effective managers or leaders do well to yield positive outcomes
Do it! Turn what you know into what you do
– What should I do more of?
– What should I start doing?
– What should I stop doing?
● Provide purpose.
● Concentrate attention.
● Convey proportion.
● Avoid sending conflicting messages.
● Make rapid impact.
● Offer a future, linked to past and present.
● Say how people can contribute.
● Say what matters.
● Give clarity of focus.
MODULE 2.1: CUTTING THROUGH THE NOISE
Ask yourself: do you know what matters and what does not in your business, enterprise, or work? Perhaps you do. But
consider once more: if asked by one of your people, ‘Does what I’m doing contribute to our objectives? Does it matter? Is it important? How does it create value?’ – do you have a way to answer? If not, you need to.
UNCOMFORTABLE LEADERSHIP LESSON NO. 2. A SURPRISE OF THE WORST KIND – Personal or Organizational – Now or later ??
MODULE 2.2: KNOW YOUR ENTERPRISE!
To lead a department or a team or an entire organization, you must understand it first. You must have a genuine fact-base which reflects the true state of the organization -strengths and weaknesses-what it has been successful at (ie where it creates value) and what it has failed in; and purpose -who or what the enterprise serves -based on Facts and Figures .
The solution to the trap of getting too close: disconnection. Being, in effect, an outsider in your own enterprise can help enormously in leading it
‘first 100 days –honeymoon period’. 1. you can get to know the enterprise in depth without suffering the constraints of being completely part of it and therefore in some way tied by its traditions, habits and culture 2. people will treat you as an outsider and thus you can make changes an insider would have real difficulty even attempting
MODULE 2.3: PROVIDE PURPOSE
Purpose is what gives our lives meaning, whether this is striving to make a million, raising children, winning Olympic gold or devoting our energies to a charitable cause. Purpose is catalytic: it galvanizes you to do something, to choose a direction, to make decisions, to act.
UNCOMFORTABLE LEADERSHIP LESSON NO. 3. THE QUICK WIN IS SOMETIMES THE SLOW DEATH (if people are involved, even in a small way, in creating their own context (ie designing and implementing the process changes), then they are less likely to resist the change (the ‘Not Invented Here’ syndrome) and more likely to make it work.)
How do I provide purpose?
Answer the following questions:
● What do I want to achieve in terms of:
– the end state (the final destination, the overarching objective, the ultimate
– the main way-stations along the route (destinations I have to reach before I
get to the ultimate goal)?
● Why is it important? What value will it create?
● Where are we now in relation to the goal?
● Where have we come from? What has happened to get us to where we are now,
both the good and the bad?
● How will I know when I’ve got there? What will this future destination/
goal/objective look and feel like?
● Who am I leading? Who is my audience? Who do I need to engage?
● What are their expectations, if any? What are their fears?
● What might get in the way of reaching the destination?
● Who might prevent us from either starting out or getting there?
● What should my first step be?
It takes practice to get through complexity and detail to simplicity and, therefore, clarity of purpose
1. Simplicity (it will avoid complex numbers and other details). Simplify to essence without losing the meaning, thrust.
2. Brevity (if necessary you could describe the purpose in 30 seconds).
3. Tangibility (people can understand what this objective/purpose/destination looks and feels like).
–right now is a series of very tough-minded, market-driven and highly effective strategies that deliver performance in the marketplace and shareholder value— not a new vision !
If the world changes, don’t be afraid to change the purpose of your work, your task, your objectives, or your enterprise.
Leaders are not meant to have all the answers. involve others in extracting the data,discussing the potential ways forward and shaping the purpose
MODULE 2.4: CONVEY PROPORTION
As people, we are accustomed to beginnings and ends and we tend to construct these things in our everyday behaviour within enterprises -it means that our actions and the bundles of actions we might call tasks or roles or processes do not become so large and unwieldy that we are unable to make progress. ‘When we have achieved this we will have succeeded. We start here in this way…’ – thus, an end and a beginning.
Human beings are psychologically primed in such a way that when they reach a goal their motivation reduces. As a leader you may need people to press on to the next objective, to celebrate achievement but not relax as they sustain effort in pursuit of the next goal.
It is very easy to ‘get into a spiral of decline’ on the back of defeat, each successive defeat creating the conditions for the next. The trap of believing the war is lost after defeat in just a small battle –wrongly set context for activity rather than achievement,
We are starting anew. This is our past. Although we have not performed at our best and we are under pressure, it is gone. This is where we are now. Yes, it is a difficult time. More difficulties are to come, I have no doubt. But we can achieve what we set out to achieve if we try. And this is our new purpose… this is how we shall succeed.
1. Keep your sights fixed on the longer-term. Don’t look too far ahead, but avoid the immediate and the quick fix
2. Say what matters and what does not. If what you convey to people, unwittingly or not, confuses them and they are simultaneously under pressure (due to customer demands, work volume or public expectation), then they will invariably fall into activity that is focused on the short-term Because confusion will oblige people to make their own interpretations of direction, leading to multiple objectives and goals, all of them different and contradictory.
3. Reimpose context at once if people see defeat in a setback or celebrate victory too soon. Don’t wait. ‘Communicate the essence time and time again, until you are sick of saying it. Even then, you probably haven’t communicated it enough!’
MODULE 2.5: MAKE RAPID IMPACT
It is undoubtedly true that charismatic people gain attention and can be great leaders, but charisma itself – that peculiar quality of power, of always being noticed, of filling a room with your presence – is not a prerequisite of leadership.
In any event, it is exceedingly difficult to learn charisma or create the conditions around you to cultivate it. What is important is the skill of making rapid impact You do this in two ways: first, through body language – use of posture, gesture and voice. Second, assertiveness: this is not confrontation or aggression but rather expressing yourself in a way that is consistent with how you feel, ie making your point and getting it noticed.
Failure to speak your mind or insist on a course of action is learnt over time as we grow up. Habitually using inappropriate posture, gesture and tone of voice can become so ingrained that we hardly notice it.
1. Gaining awareness of your own behaviour through self-observation is the best way to start to change. But be specific: think carefully about how you behave in situations where you need to have impact, like management team meetings, speeches to staff or social events. Think about where you are already aware that you feel shaky, tense, nervous and regret not saying something, or where you feel disappointed with yourself 2. Analyse your behaviour by looking at the types of behaviour, posture, gesture and tone of voice you display in particular situations. Get specifi list of behaviours, postures and gestures you need to improve and another list of specific behaviours, postures and gestures that you want to display. 3. Learn high-impact behaviour in bite-sized chunks, it’s tempting to try everything all at once or to look at the list
and think that it’s a wish list that will never be achieved. Look for models of the appropriate behaviour you want to learn in colleagues or other leaders you admire Look at the individual actions, postures and gestures they use. Then plan how to tackle the situation, rehearse the behaviour alone (looking in a mirror is useful) and finally try out the new behaviour gradually in live situations.4. get feedback Ask others for comments on the gestures you employ, the way you sit or stand, the language you use, your tone of voice
High-impact leadership: some tips
● Use your voice to good effect. A deeper tone projects greater confidence and authority.
● Sit upright at meetings and take the most central or dominant seating position (usually the head of the table).
● Use larger gestures, hands open, arms wide. Used occasionally they command attention. (Flailing hand and arm movements also attract attention but for the opposite reason!)
● Keep your chin up: you’d be surprised how many people drop their head in a submissive way when they feel uncertain.
● Finish what you have to say if you intend to say it. This doesn’t mean being aggressive and interrupting others. Use prefatory remarks like, ‘Let me finish my point’ and then get on with it. If you do this enough, others will learn not to
● Say what you intend but never speak simply to get airtime. Some people feel the pressure in meetings, particularly with peers or more senior colleagues, to say something, say anything. As a result, they say a lot but make little impact, chiefly because they’re not thinking, simply reacting. Listen to the flow of discussion but spend the time thinking about what you need to say, then make your point: it is bound to have bigger impact than passively following others’
● Keep your hands away from your face, even if you’re leaning on your cheek or chin at a table. When you speak this looks as though you’re unsure of your words.
● Make eye contact. One-to-one this is important if you want to be sure that people will believe what you’re saying or will do what you ask. In groups, eye contact makes and retains engagement with people. Leadership is all about engaging with people, getting their attention and keeping it focused.
● Say ‘Yes’ and mean it. Say ‘No’ and mean it. Speak and act in a decisive manner when it is called for. When debate and discussion are called for, listen.
Make risks and take risks
● Focus on opportunity.
● Break with convention.
● Try things.
● Ask: ‘What if…?’ to create opportunities.
● Pull the plug on failing initiatives.
● Do constructive damage to the status quo.
● Escalate conflict
Understand what opportunities exist, or can be created, and then converting them into results in order to:
● pre-empt the otherwise hidden or unexpected risks that might damage the enterprise; take advantage of opportunities for success in the present or future;
● create new ways of doing things that are beneficial, advantageous or profitable;
● expose yourself and your people to new situations that develop thinking and skills
MODULE 3.1: RISK MAKING, RISK TAKING
In this fastpaced world – no matter what the enterprise you lead – the necessity to take risks, to make and seize opportunities, to ask questions about what needs to change and then commit to changing it, is overriding. When the organization needs new ideas, creativity, innovation, entrepreneurial spirit, faster speed-to-market and the ability and preparedness to
break with convention, there are too few, if any, leaders to make these things happen
Low achievers do one of two things: 1) they minimize risk as much as possible, to the extent that they severely limit all potential options and opportunities; or 2) they take wild, irrational risks, which have a higher likelihood, therefore, of
High achievers, by contrast, typically take moderate risks, but the key here is that they calculate risks against circumstances and their own abilities. As a result, leaders who achieve things are usually making careful, sometimes intuitive, calculations of risk -(not wild, irrational risks based on instinct)
Where we are, where are we going and where not and why !!
‘What if…?’ about the current context, thereby creating opportunity options for further consideration. Leaders break rules – it’s their job. Leaders create opportunities● What things must I change? ● How do I change things or shut them down? ● What new things can I try and when?
‘What are the pros and cons?’ –formal, data-driven, experience-based or Intuitive calculation of the potential downsides and upsides of an opportunity . seek out and encourage different opinions and views as you think through the pros and cons and you gain insight from the these extremes of potential outcomes , this enriched detbate will help in avoiding the simple quick fix or missing real opportunities for improvements. Consider the best and the worst possible outcomes, not just what you believe is the probable outcome; Exaggerate the likely threats; play devil’s advocate, Take time out to consider. Insight often comes from subconscious processing of ideas, opinions and data when you’re actively engaged in something completely separate from the issue or risk at hand
‘I’ll try it…’ Demonstrate your belief by your posture, bearing and behaviour and then take the decision. Thousands of good ideas, opportunities and insights go nowhere every single day in organizations because people neglect to take the step of making the decision and then taking action. It requires a focus on results, making things happen, ensuring that what you decide gets implemented
Rate yourself against the behaviours and use the checklist as a progress assessment to see how you’re doing
● Taking the risk of backing a fledgling initiative or new way of working that you believe has potential but is viewed by others as a waste of time.
● Taking the personal risk of presenting opposing information that will undoubtedly cause annoyance and even conflict with others.
● Sticking to your belief in following a strategy or an approach despite the risk of pressure, criticism, persuasion or even threat.
● Listening to all the arguments and options, but taking the risk of being prepared to reject all of them because they are inappropriate.
● Taking the risk of being prepared to back down and accept a better argument or option than the one you proposed.
MODULE 3.2: FOCUS ON OPPORTUNITY
Remember that opportunities are the risks that it would be easier and safer to avoid. Those who are risk-averse will try to exercise complete control over people and the detail of their actions. Leaders will release control over people and their actions but retain firm control over context, ie purpose and direction. By releasing their direct control over our individual actions but within the bounds of clearly articulated purpose, leaders show us personal and collective opportunities for performing better than we believe we are capable of doing
● What if we threw out all our current, tried-and-tested tactics and started over – how would we be different?
● What if we completely changed our procurement process?
● What if we hired people with a completely different background, age profile, education?
● What if we created an alliance with our competitors?
UNCOMFORTABLE LEADERSHIP LESSON NO. 4. LEADING PEOPLE IS NOT CONTROLLING PEOPLE
If you don’t hit the targets, I expect you to fix things so that you are on target and come to me for help or with suggestions if the problem is beyond your control. That’s my approach. And it’s simple and fair. I will invariably judge you against are the performance criteria and targets that I get judged against for the whole centre. You can work however you like within those parameters. If you hit those targets and something’s going wrong, then it’s my responsibility not yours
MODULE 3.3: TRY THINGS!
Quite often they have no direct control over the circumstances that led to the original failure but they start to assume, together with their colleagues, that they also have no control over other aspects of their enterprise or even their own work. Effort, they believe, makes no difference There is a pervasive culture of learnt helplessness due to stress, failures, disappointment or defeat. In short, they lose the motivation to respond in an effective way.
So what is required is 1) imposing context and, in particular, conveying proportion 2) trying things, and therefore demonstrating by example – show ‘that every problem, every issue is resolvable… and it’s up to you to do it…. Anyone, anywhere can make things happen.’
· Delegate decision-making appropriately, within clear boundaries, so that your people learn to take the initiative themselves and understand the consequences of doing so
· Allow people to try things and make mistakes, so long as the mistakes are truly the result of trying new things and not sloppy thinking or work, and that the lessons from the mistakes are captured and learnt
· Encourage people to take action, keeping you informed but not constantly waiting for permission to do anything
· Take the decision, either yes or no – refusing to do so, remember, is a decision of a kind but one that has unplanned and uncontrollable consequences
MODULE 3.4: PULL THE PLUG
How many projects, initiatives, processes or activities are there that just don’t add value or contribute to purpose? Obsolete initiatives and processes persist because, more often than not, they provide a justification for someone’s current daily activity When things don’t come right, more projects are launched to bolster those that are failing or to prop up critical business activities that are not getting the support they need or expected. Two, three or more initiatives, though apparently
separate, will be pursuing similar aims, resulting in massive duplication of effort and cost. ASK what its importance is against other initiatives; how it contributes to overall direction or purpose ; how it fits with finances in long term. [tie all activities and initiatives to an overarching focal point and thereby provides the reason why a project is/not relevant]
MODULE 3.5: DO CONSTRUCTIVE DAMAGE TO THE STATUS QUO
Iconoclasm – the tearing down of the old, the smashing of rules, the overturning of conventional wisdom – is at least as important a set of leadership actions as those of a positive, constructive intent. Doing constructive damage, therefore,
means forcing or triggering new, innovative behaviour at the individual level
changing the composition of work groups so that people from different departments or teams by
· targeting benchmarks from areas or industries completely different to the conventionally accepted
· overtly and consistently by-passing bureaucratic ways of working dominant in the culture
· doing away with specific policies, processes or OLD ways of working
thereby triggering urgency to find or create alternative, innovative solutions not simply reiterations of the old, conventional ways of operating
MODULE 3.6: ESCALATE CONFLICT
Conflict exists in all human social interaction. Managers who, worried about their reputation or fearing criticism, desist from raising contentious issues about the way processes are working or who neglect to forward to other teams, or more senior executives, unflattering or critical data, avoid, suppress or ignore conflict with potentially devastating consequences. Conflict is active, often contentious dispute, debate or disagreement, typically triggered or accompanied by the presentation of contrary or opposing information.
· sharpening people’s understanding of goals (clearing up miscommunication and misunderstanding);
· stimulating individuals to define where they stand, thereby building mutual understanding between different groups
· motivation and energy to deal with underlying problems
· discouraging avoidance (such as pretending a problem doesn’t exist or everything is OK when it really isn’t);
· preventing premature solutions, which achieve only half-cocked, impoverished or unintended results.
Remember, leadership must look to the longer-term – not exclusively, but predominantly
The conflict curve- at the individual level conflict can boost performance but, if escalated too much, it can create paralysis – they retreat to more rigid patterns of behaviour, they think in a more constrained way, consider fewer options or alternatives and tend to see threats when there may be none.
Task-related conflict typically produces desirable outcomes such as better solutions, greater understanding of a problem, shared comprehension of complex issues and a sense of urgency. Social conflict reduces performance and satisfaction
and promotes rigidity and ‘groupthink’ – a tendency for everyone in a team to think in the same way and to ignore or downplay genuine threats
So, the essential lesson for leaders is, first, to be alert to the real danger of peacemaking initiatives where these are inappropriate and, second, to create and exploit constructive conflict as you make every effort to build unity and cohesion around values and norms
overriding commitment to setting out, communicating, reinforcing and judging managers and employees by their cultural values viz responsibility, respect and determination. ABB
How to escalate conflict: four guidelines
1. Learn to fight fairly – it is better to prevent task-related conflict becoming social conflict
No knock-out blows. No one should be trying to achieve victory over others with different views
Reciprocity. Anyone in the meeting who holds opposing points of view should be allowed to make their case or argue their corner in response . Hierarchy kills this reciprocity
Honesty Using facts and clear evidence should be encouraged
No ultimatums. Threats are attempts at dominance and introduce the possibility either of personal attacks or a complete shutdown of task-focused debate
2. Establish a conflict protocol as a standard throughout your team
Communicate the practice of fair fighting
Acceptance of diverse viewpoints, from the most senior to the most junior
Examination of opposing suggestions, options or recommendations rather than simply giving them cursory attention
Frank and intense debate
Collaboration, sharing and speaking openly
Sharp distinction between political manoeuvring and personal attacks (which lead to distrust and disaffection) and open, constructive conflict (which leads to task-related progress and better decisions).
3. Differentiate before you integrate
Organized social interaction inevitably emphasizes integration, ie early agreement or acquiescence to a decision. (premature or too rapid before examining all material facts= (‘Let’s get agreement on the way forward – fast!’)
Express differences and options first, then work towards integration and decisions.-real alternatives based on real facts
4. Shake up the complacency of success
Adjust the composition of the team
Raise standards or objectives
Create competition between teams / contention around specific facts
Help employees re-energize themselves and be clear about their personal objectives and contribution to the enterprise
Challenge and change
● Be adventurous.
● Grab people’s attention.
● Jolt your people, from time to time, out of accepting things as they are.
● Take competitors by surprise.
● Give up the past to operate in the future
MODULE 4.1: UNPREDICTABILITY
inventiveness – a willingness to go beyond the norm, to move outside the pattern and do things that are different and could not be predicted in a world that seems overwhelmingly to value the logical, the rational, the uniform, the predictable.
It is very easy in many enterprises for people to become fearful, apathetic, cynical, sceptical, stuck in a rut, or simply trapped in the workaday grind of the status quo. Any ways Do what no one expects. Surprise people
Once you’ve started to develop your leadership, use the checklist as a progress assessment to see how you’re doing
MODULE 4.2: CREATE ADVENTURE
The challenge can seem daunting, each of its component demands difficult tasks that need to be completed, on time, on budget, to a standard, to precise expectations.
Leaders- – create adventure. Bring excitement. Transform both the routine and the insurmountable into an undertaking with all the risks and promises that galvanize human beings to do more .. through .. use or create threats or impending disasters, and elevate ambition
Threats and impending disasters trigger motivation and action in the same way as primitive survival imperatives. Its advantage is that it helps people endorse and act upon change because the need is compelling – there are no good reasons not to follow your lead (essentially negative and reactive rather than proactively leading the market and the competition)
Give them an ongoing sense that their everyday work is something much more than the ordinary, that it contributes directly to a great undertaking, of which it is a privilege to be a part
Richard Branson encourages informality and discourages conformity, with the express purpose in mind that people in the Virgin Group should feel that they can have fun and be creative, taking risks on business ideas that will make Virgin’s new ventures compelling propositions for customers.
UNCOMFORTABLE LEADERSHIP LESSON NO. 5. DON’T LET THE ADVENTURE BECOME ALL-CONSUMING
MODULE 4.3: TAKE THE ORGANIZATION BY SURPRISE
Leaders who try to do the unconventional and the non-traditional and, in so doing, supersede or nullify current strengths for new advantages, will always beat their conservative peers who tend to stick to what they know. All elements of an enterprise assets, systems, processes, even people – need refreshing at some point – even the values or the way values are lived in an organization
If you are unable to radically alter the organizational structure or even the physical layout of your enterprise, one straightforward way to surprise people is to break up hierarchies or boundaries but simultaneously ensure that individuals’ performance objectives are tightly linked to accountability and responsibility
Make people and teams responsible for performance rather than for a role or a job -bust rigid definitions that restrict performance and human potential. Help people to see their ideas brought to fruition making sure the organizational bureaucracy is out of the way
Make people re-think assumptions and pre-empts complacency it is not an attack on an individual’s analysis or efforts; it sticks to the issue or the task; extending the perimeters of analysis and pushing into new areas.
MODULE 4.4: PROMOTE THE HERETICS
The point: creating points of abrasion, new ideas rubbing against old notions, out of which come new ways of organizing,
thinking and doing things.
A leader has to build grassroots heresy, where a critical mass of people start to question the way things are done and are prepared to take the difficult first step of actually making small changes to their own behaviour or to processes and systems
Of course, this invitation to challenge authority must be couched within the context you have imposed
You must publicly sanction heretics’ efforts – invite the challenge and reward those who rise to it . You must explicitly support heretics in a sustained way – nurture heretics by clearing obstacles and supplying resources or access to resources Make it clear you do not expect them to ask for permission. Make it clear that they stay within the specific context.
MODULE 4.5: MAKE LEAPS – GIVE UP THE PAST TO OPERATE IN THE
Executives fail quite often because they are overly committed to the behaviour patterns and approaches that worked for them during their career to date and cannot change. If this is true in microcosm for the personal efficacy of leaders, it is also true in macrocosm in the way leaders deal with strategic and organizational challenges
Keep asking ‘What’s the future going to look like?’ ‘Changing yourself, changing your behaviour is very difficult
Spend time on the issues behind the issue
Make deliberate strategic leaps (creation of new unpredictable opportunities) into the future -making leaps of this sort creates competitive advantage (whether in time, process, service, brand or product)
Enterprises compete in markets that are not static: there is a constant state of disequilibrium, driven by new technology, new entrants, new forms of organization, new ideas and, of course, new leaders
When the activity that produces leaps delivers new options or possibilities, you need to test these against your context and leadership purpose—possible that require a profound shift in purpose, strategy or direction
Involve others beyond yourself and your team. Let all stakeholders contribute their perspectives. Employees who are far from the top of the organizational hierarchy but closest to customers and suppliers enjoy a unique advantage, still
inadequately tapped by leaders
Build genuine challenge into any key debate around your strategic or operational future – challenge and provoke during offsite meetings to promote higher levels of critique, intellectual analysis and boundary pushing.-
Broaden your competitor analysis to capture ideas from industries or fields of endeavour beyond your own Your enterprise starts to converge on the industry norm or average, you fail to innovate and, although you may believe you are different, the differences are minor and uncompetitive. Remember, competitors very seldom provide answers to your problems: they think you have the answers. New entrants from other industries by and large transform the
industries they target and through their innovation advantage rapidly sweep away most of the old players.
Construct an ‘as is’ picture and a ‘to be’ picture-force yourself to set out in detail, honestly and unequivocally,
a picture of how your enterprise operates now and a expected future scenario. The differences will show you the size of the shift you will have to make to achieve your future and will force you and others to contemplate possibilities you had not dreamed of
Invest in knowledge Get access to New ideas that are the creators of market differentiation, service product, brand and wealth . Collaborate.
Making leaps and sustaining the process
Commit to changing your dependence on past terms of reference and ways of doing things –write down your commitment to yourself, date it and then sign it – Track it- Get external feedback and comments on achievements-
Devise and implement feedback mechanisms How do my team and I currently think about the future of this enterprise? Who (all) do I involve? What approaches do we use? Are we dismissive, negative, responsive, encouraging, open –to new ideas?
Identify the changes you want to make on the basis of the feedback you get –in behavioural terms, not broad generalized wishes-measurable and trackable
Take action Start trying out new ways of working and moderate them to make them more effective as you track how they’re going
● Stand on your own; have an opinion.
● Display your conviction, be fervent.
● Build relationships and trust.
● Implement a Code of Conduct.
● Tell it like it is.
● Get a regular reality check.
● inspire people to follow you
●overcome the inevitable barriers and obstacles;
● have the courage to stand your ground;
● build self-belief in your people.
MODULE 5.1: CONVICTION
Conviction enables leaders to win people to their cause, to generate energy and self-belief in followers. The astounding capacity of deep conviction (in almost anything) that, by itself, can get other people to credit
it as undeniable, as a fact
1. Conviction vests leaders with authority. You should never make the mistake of believing that authority comes automatically with seniority or title. 2. Conviction attracts energy. The pure belief in a goal, fervently and passionately expressed, acts as a homing device for people in your team. It both attracts and directs their energy to your goal or purpose 3. Conviction absorbs uncertainty Also, in times of change and the extremes of threat and disaster, we look to leaders to convince us that day-to-day uncertainties and misfortunes are not overwhelming and need not divert us from the goals of real importance.
Rate Your behaviours use the checklist to establish first where your strengths are and then where you need to improve
MODULE 5.2: STAND ON YOUR OWN
People expect leaders to have a point of view, to express their opinions and take a stand. This is not the same as having all the answers. An expert has all the answers; non necessarily so for the leader.
1. Have opinions and be able to defend them. 2. Listen to contrary opinions or arguments, but if you’re unconvinced, stick with your conviction. 3. Examine your thoughts and feelings
But with the demand for rapid decision-making and the pressures of political manoeuvring from which very few organizations are immune, leaders are faced with argument and counterargument, this choice or that dilemmas for example, with limited resources do you invest in the short-term or for the long-term; do you commit capital and effort to innovation or tried and trusted products; do you emphasize what is shared and global or what is distinct and local?
Naturally, there is the opposite danger of holding fast to views and opinions beyond their value and against all rational argument.
Realize that carving out one’s own opinions and points of view – even if they were modifications of those presented
– was much more important than simply acting as an arbiter
Invoke conflict protocol1. an acceptance of diverse viewpoints2. examination of opposing suggestions, options or recommendations 3. provoking frank and intense debate emphasizing collaboration, sharing and speaking openly 4 making a sharp distinction between political manoeuvring and personal attacks
People who are able to remain optimistic under conditions of extreme stress, danger or uncertainty are much more likely to get through the experience Optimistic people are also distinguished by their ability to keep trying things, in spite of the odds
Optimists will do four things: 1. Think of the danger, difficulty or uncertainty as a problem to be re-solved. 2. Break the problem up into smaller component parts3. Tackle each of the component parts in turn. 4. Take action; try out alternatives.
Do not pretend., ask yourself ● Am I convinced? ● Do I believe in this? ● If I don’t believe it, why not? What is missing? What makes me uncomfortable? ● How does it fit with my overall context, objectives or purpose? ● If I know what is missing or makes me uncomfortable, then what should I change and how should I change it?
MODULE 5.3: DISPLAY YOUR CONVICTION
Boldly Demonstrate Your conviction to others. You cannot risk a disconnection between what you say and what you do or even what you say and how you say it. If you have particular ways of behaving – an off-hand manner or aloofness, for example – that do not match your words or your intent, then people will misread your intent; associated, perhaps unfairly, with hypocrisy and expedience.
State your position; be bold Say what you believe in and be prepared to defend it with ● seriousness and● firmness
Track your own behaviour and get feedback ● What should I do more of? ● What should I start doing? ● What should I stop doing?
Match behaviour to word Start from the assumption that whatever you say about what you believe in is pure rhetoric and needs something to reinforce it, to demonstrate that what you’re saying is important, meaningful and relevant
Recognize others who take action to live up to your conviction Go out of your way to recognize and reward team members who are living up to the spirit of your conviction
MODULE 5.4: BUILD RELATIONSHIPS AND TRUST
Trust is the expectancy of people that they can rely on your word as a leader. Trust elevates levels of commitment and sustains effort and performance without the need for management controls and close monitoring
Its prime behavioural attributes are consistency and integrity viz: ● sharing appropriate information, especially about oneself; ● willingness to be influenced; ● avoiding the abuse of team-members’ vulnerability (because of their lack of positional power or inadequate access to information, and so on); ● being fair; ● fulfilling promises.
Continually strive to build relationships not just between a leader and his or her people, but between followers by building of trust.
Get to know your people Break out of the standard work-based routines of interaction where behaviour tends to be regulated by unspoken rules of engagement on what you can talk about and how you interact – work only, irrelevant social chit-chat, polite discussion, respect for hierarchy and so on. Be prepared to talk about yourself, rather than just everyday work – your interests, your background, your ambitions for the enterprise.
Get the underlying issues out –Simply listen -explore their concerns, worries about work issues, ambitions, difficulties with other team members, suggestions for improvements, etc State that you plan to use the gist of what they say anonymously in order to solve problems and make progress, but that the exact comments will go no further than you.
Establish a conflict protocol as a standard throughout your team –communicate the practice of fair fighting
Develop and implement a Code of Conduct for your team –model for the sorts of behaviour you want to see as normal and which can be observed by people -understood in straightforward action terms (offenders must face consequences.)
Do what you promise If you have agreed to get something done for a team member by a particular date, bust a gut to make sure you do it. If you are uncertain, tell people you cannot give guarantees, rather than allowing false hopes to grow
UNCOMFORTABLE LEADERSHIP LESSON NO. 6. HAVING UTTER CONVICTION… ABOUT YOUR OWN SELF-IMPORTANCE Most often the self-importance, born of deep-rooted insecurities and fears developed in a difficult childhood, drives behaviour, such as needing control over others in case their self-importance is brought into question. Bullying, aggression, the cultivation of a small loyal band of followers and the ‘excommunication’ of those who challenge are all characteristics of these leaders
MODULE 5.5: TELL IT LIKE IT IS
The trap of not saying what you mean Most social interaction involves us in obeying unwritten rules and is mostly cultural and hope that others will understand our drift without forcing us to be explicit.
The trap of avoiding the unpleasant or the difficult It is perfectly natural behaviour for most of us to deal with the things we like rather than those we dislike or that we find boring We would all much rather get on with the exciting and the enjoyable, dispatching unpleasant business to the bottom of the pile or delegating it to other people to deal with.
The trap of too many triumphs won and threats overcome It comes about where a leader
experiences a string of successes, interrupted by substantive difficulties or challenges but over which he or she invariably triumphs. Their vaulting self-confidence drives them to a blinkered, head-on clash equipped with skills and knowledge they have overestimated and against a challenge they have underestimated. Pride and self-confidence make them inclined to reject other perspectives and suggestions
The trap of hearing only what it suits you to hear Leaders inevitably have information passed through to them via other people – often lots of other people, since you may rely on numerous individuals or be leading a complex enterprise Most people will automatically oblige you in what they believe you want to hear rather than what you should be told It is also no surprise that they will tell you things it suits them best to tell.
The trap of uncompromising conviction Out of balance Conviction will encourage and entrench the autocratic and the authoritarian, to separate them from their followers or to push them towards high-risk strategies, ventures and tactics out of synchrony with the purpose of the enterprise or the needs of its members Where their conviction becomes detached from reality or becomes self-serving, the problems start
Distortions that you don’t know about become irretrievable errors and so essential tactics for skirting these are 1. Face up to problems and tackle them. 2. Tell it like it is. 3. Get a regular reality check – get others to tell you how it is
Don’t leave problems that are too difficult or problematic Don’t fudge decisions. Get to grips with them: they usually end
up being less uncomfortable than you first imagine and you will be in a minority of people who do this
Putting a gloss on a tough situation because you think people will be alarmed or frightened is not to lead people but to try to control them by controlling the information they receive i.e We need to know how it is – now! Then we can make decisions fast and get on to the next thing; through open prompt and clear communication with opportunity to respond and feedback on action taken.
Face reality – deliberately getting access to the bad news as well as the good – about the enterprise and about yourself by willingness and ability to engage with others, both inside and outside
Generate critical mass
● Use influencing behaviours.
● Get people making decisions.
● Turn knowledge into action.
● Create urgency and restlessness.
● Finish what you start.
● Build an ethos or climate of people development
MODULE 6.1: DOING MORE THAN MAKING THINGS HAPPEN
Conviction is a catalyst: it activates. But it is uncontrolled Where the energy created by these convictions is more organized and reaches a sufficiently large mass of people, so its impact is greater and also more sustainable
Meanwhile Charisma of the Hero / Star does not create any purposeful action other than for most of the public to be more than averagely interested in the Person and what he or she says and does
From a leadership point of view, the intention in channelling this energy is not simply to produce individual action – though clearly that is important – but to create in an enterprise sufficient charge or impetus to ensure that a state of critical
behaviour mass, involving the largest possible number of people, is reached and sustained- making things happen at scale.
One can achieve this by ● influencing and persuading; ● building an agenda for action; ● creating urgency; ● clearing obstacles; ● using knowledge by turning it into action; ● encouraging learning and development; ● getting out of the way.
MODULE 6.2: USE INFLUENCING TACTICS
As Leadership is getting people to do things they have never thought of doing, do not believe are possible or that they
do not want to do. Using influence is therefore essential
while hierarchical or positional authority enables you to instruct people to carry out tasks because of the contractual force of employment terms and conditions, you will never do more than get them to comply with instructions but will never bring about commitment to do better, nor will they innovate or make sacrifices.
There are times, for example, when building a coalition or consensus is the best approach to take – when you are trying to get peers or team members to buy into and support a new idea or way of working, or when you are dealing with difficult labour negotiations. By contrast, at times of crisis, leading by diktat is essential: this means decisive, uncompromising, directive leadership with little regard for either the discomfort or support of others
- Use the right influencing behaviours in the most appropriate circumstances –constant over-reliance on pressure tactics may produce high performance and urgency today, tomorrow and next week, but will very likely be laying the foundations for an insidious culture of risk-aversion devoted to self-protection in long term
- Don’t over-rely on socially acceptable influencing behaviours Some leaders make the mistake of relying on socially acceptable influencing behaviours such as support and rational argument because they don’t want to upset people or so that they can avoid unpleasant decisions and confrontations Usually, the targets of the influencing att empt simply adjust to this incrementalism without changing their behavior
- Decide whether you’re aiming for commitment or compliance Commitment engages the individual in willingness to take responsibility and to add value, Compliance secures the action intended by the leader but the result is that it shifts the underlying responsibility straight back to the leader.
Basic guidelines on a range of influencing behaviours , their appropriateness and result is tabulated below
MODULE 6.3: TURN KNOWLEDGE INTO ACTION
Inertia occasioned by habit, comfort and complacency is enemy no 1. People believe There is no compelling reason to
really make things happen, to use information, to share knowledge, to change, or to make progress
What is their explicit purpose for the meeting / Project /Task? Is there decision simplicity: in the form of yes or no or a choice between a, b, or c? Are inputs/ decisions designated a timescale, ie by when will this decision be made/feedback given? Are individuals assigned responsibility for actions? Are milestones and deadline Clear and adhered? IS someone clearly designated to take action / decision/ implementation ?
If knowledge (data, information and intelligence) is idle, then it becomes an opportunity cost to the enterprise unless only such ideas and information are turned into desirable action . Knowledge sharing can be facilitated by technology, but technology is often mistaken as the solution –Infrastructure does not guarantee that information will move; and it does not guarantee that ideals will be used. However, information is turned into knowledge by bringing disparate, often unconnected pieces of information together to create explicit options or alternatives. Evaluating these options and their implications provides the knowledge for taking decisions and then defining an agenda for action.
Make explicit who takes the decisions Sometimes the organizational design is wrong and too many people have decision-making responsibility; some of the worst instances are where a committee or other body is charged with decision-making and no one individual makes the call. Always identify single-point accountability, especially within committees, in project teams or task forces that span departments and functions
Push decision-making as far down the hierarchy as possible As a leader you will never have enough access to information to pull even a fraction of the critical decisions up to you and keep the enterprise running Give your people the space, opportunity and support to take their own decisions. Don’t just throw responsibility and autonomy away, but devolve it systematically as a matter of practice. Draw the boundary and then delegate.
Defining explicit alternatives forces managers to make more coherent decisions by understanding the implications or consequences of each.
Place value on ‘can do’ action over planning, analysing, meeting, thinking Often organizational consequences
punish action while ignoring or even, bizarrely, rewarding inaction Make it clear that you value action over and above everything else. Likewise, make it clear that you do not value ‘busyness’ for its own sake – busyness such as lots of meetings, endless planning, discussions, analysis and so on. Certainly these things are important but action in pursuit of a
defined purpose – ie the context you impose – is what leaders require
Get your people to develop an agenda for action – clearly articulated – that specifies what must be done, by whom and when; with priorities for where you commit time, resource, investment and effort.
Clear obstacles and barriers out of the way Anything that slows people down or gets in the way of their making progress on what needs to be done is incredibly frustrating and stifles motivation ; find out what gets in the way. Engage with people about the barriers and obstacles that affect their work –like processes with bottle-necks that restrict the efforts of key people or teams; administrative bureaucracy that could be adjusted or swept away; ridiculous rules that still exist for historical reasons
Get the people who have to live with the barriers and obstacles to define the changes and, wherever possible, make the changes themselves. Followers tend to be impressed by leaders who make the time and invest the effort to help their people: this builds trust
Create urgency A palpable sense of urgency itself creates action and gets people to start to draw on information in order to make decisions which themselves galvanize people to further action. -set stretching goals–make clear who is accountable–be clear that a deadline is a deadline–put in place intermediate milestones en route to the main deadline-get regular updates
MODULE 6.4: STAY THE COURSE
People lose interest or hit difficult obstacles. Sometimes, businessas- usual takes precedence. Most enterprises face the problem of starting initiatives and not finishing them due to size, scale, speed, or alliances .
Ask why the initiative should continue and what tangible benefits it brings and how it relates to overall objective so that you can decide to either pull the plug or stay the course
You certainly have to get better at follow-through, with sufficient determination and courage to stick to a specific effort long enough so that it works and pays off. First, it ensures that real progress is made on a few key initiatives or against a number of goals critical to your overall purpose, instead of dissipating effort across too many fronts and therefore always being late or underperforming. Second, it builds commitment from your people in the longer term: they will see that half-measures, distractions and giving up on difficult or unfinished business are not tolerated
Focus attention and effort on a manageable chunk of work/team/timeline !
Set a 4-month timeline –goal of being completed within four months and must deliver. This concentrates attention and makes the time horizon close enough to drive urgency and results -Subsequent work on another four-month timeline.
Task 4 people to tackle the work work as a team and four remain the core –makes communication, goal understanding and teamwork considerably easier
Demand results/payback within 4 months agreed set of specified benefits, results or payback to accrue within four months of the end of the work –concentrate on effort, not on activities -behaviour that produces tangible results
UNCOMFORTABLE LEADERSHIP LESSON NO. 7. DEVELOP YOUR PEOPLE AS YOU DEVELOP YOURSELF The enterprise itself could not develop without the ongoing development of its human assets. The alternative was a constant and expensive battle to find new talent and implement complex devices to sustain motivation and morale; but with steep and long learning curve
MODULE 6.5: CREATE AND SUSTAIN AN ETHOS OF HUMAN DEVELOPMENT
Our era and our social existence demand products, service and ideas of a sophistication and at a scale unparalleled in history and thus there is also an unprecedented kaleidoscope of work options open to billions of people all over the world. Skills are in short supply and the best companies snap them up making every effort to hire the best people, develop
them and retain them through top-notch training and experiential development
First, there is a need to build a depth of skills behind leaders to strengthen the enterprise and lead others in turn. Second, a pool of potential leaders to take on the succession at an appropriate time is required
Leaders have to ensure that their people: ● are motivated to develop their knowledge and skills; ● continue to develop their skills rather than being satisfied with how far they’ve developed or how much they’ve learnt; ● want to contribute their knowledge and skills to the enterprise
Leaders do this by 1. Make people feel valued. 2. Expose people to developmental experiences. 3. Give people space to succeed and grow. 4. Develop a number of potential successors.
Take the time and invest the effort in giving people recognition for their work and achievements. This requires you to be close enough to their work to understand and know what they’re doing and what they’ve achieved Recognition works when it is personal and direct /specific . Furthermore, the simple action of spending time listening to your people (and
showing you are listening) can, both in the short term and over time, be immensely powerful in motivating individuals
Also, make sure you tell your people, from time to time, how they individually fit into the context and purpose you have set and how they can contribute Finally, let your people take the glory for their achievements . leaders say how
things should be, but serve their people in helping to fulfil their goal
Go out of your way to give people opportunities to try out their skills It is in this way that leaders safeguard the future of the enterprise and enhance its current capacity to thrive gently rising learning curve of gradually increasing knowledge and skill – it is a series of uneven steps, triggered by environmental challenges in which people learn new skills
Give someone additional responsibility / Promote someone earlier/ stretch goals/ short-term projects
It has been said that the best leaders select a talented bunch of people, set the goal and broad parameters and then get out of the way If you micromanage you will get short-term results for the loss of longer-term motivation, sense of responsibility and the commitment to innovate and learn. Also if your people are not learning new skills and knowledge, then your enterprise as a whole will rapidly fall behind
Too often, leaders end up faced with serious external difficulties and an absence of effective or credible leadership successors when they should already have passed on the mantle to up-and-coming leaders This may be due to arrogance / tendency to cast shadow / fear of being deposed/ desire to keep going / mistake of identifying a single ‘crown prince’ successor etc
● Be clear on the criteria for leadership and identify potential successors
● Task the small group of people you have identified with handling the most demanding customer segments.
● Ask them to take on roles or projects in the most difficult teams, departments or business units.
● Give them the toughest assignments, especially those that involve leading change or that demand new thinking and approaches.
● Load up their leadership responsibility, for example additional project roles or larger teams.
● Decide on the right time to pass over the leadership succession and stick to it
The dominant leadership sub-
● To understand how underlying personality, psychological preferences, knowledge and skills, and the environment interact to drive particular patterns of leadership behaviour.
● To identify the main sub-domains of leadership behaviour.
● To pinpoint your own dominant leadership pattern.
● To challenge yourself to deal with blind spots and weaknesses
MODULE 7.1: DOMINANT LEADERSHIP PATTERNS
First, as you develop from childhood to adult life, your personality becomes more or less fixed identified what have come to be called the ‘Big Five’ personality . So you may tend to be extrovert (outward-looking, getting your energy from the world around you and the people in it) or introvert (more inwardly focused, preferring time to yourself and taking your energy from the inner world of thoughts and ideas). from being sensitive and emotional to secure and relaxed, open and imaginative to practical and set in your ways, and lastly conscientious and well organized to easygoing
Second, the experiences you have, particularly in the early formative years of your life, afford you opportunities, some welcome, some unpalatable, that forge a preference to behave in certain ways in specific types of situation – like your willingness to experiment or take risks
Third, the knowledge and skills you acquire from school, training, college, university and so on will equip you with extra ‘tools’ to be effective in the world, with the added benefit that your confidence is boosted
All of these factors interact together to make people who they are.
Domains : Make Risks Take Risks Impose Context Conviction Challenge and Change Generate Critical Mass
MODULE 7.2: THE LEADERSHIP SUB-DOMAINS
Transformational Leader –Leaders who show strength in all the components of the leadership domain are
those who are able to transform the commitment levels of those around them, to get their unit or their organization to create breakpoint advantages, open up new opportunities and even reinvent whole markets
● deep conviction about what they want to achieve;
● preparedness to go against conventional wisdom;
● surround themselves with followers who demonstrate a range of outlooks – commitment to execution and delivery, unorthodox thinking and creativity, willingness to challenge;
● restless energy to push others to get things right, to aspire to more;
● determination to make things happen, to execute on plans;
● clear about the agenda for decisions and action;
● able to unite multiple constituencies around inspirational goals;
● seek out opportunities to make convictions and aspirations real;
● unlikely to be put off by short-term or even persistent setbacks;
● inspire through logic and appeals to shared ambition: ‘We can achieve our aspirations if, collectively, we stick to our ambition and deliver more than we have before!’;
● rarely prevaricate, ruthless follow-through;
● encourage autonomy in others to seek opportunities, take risks and execute plans.
Enforcer who act in ways characterized by cautious optimism and a drive to make sure that specific objectives are achieved, display strong belief in what you are doing and commitment to stay the course. You will have a preference for the steady state, be excellent at setting clear direction and making it all happen in an organized way. However, you will tend to limit options in order to maintain your control over the primary goal
● clear on direction, context and the agenda for action;
● strong belief in what they want to achieve and commitment to make it happen;
● dedicated to successful achievement and unity around the objective: ‘This is our goal; let’s achieve it together.’;
● prefer direct control over the plan and its execution;
● dislike being challenged;
● focus on detail and analysis;
● wary of risk and risk-takers;
● perturbed by change and will generally avoid it or try to control it;
● tend to prefer centralized structures and to keep team and followers on a tight rein;
● uncomfortable with multiple options; prefer limited parameters where the goal is clear;
● danger of underachieving through restriction of possibilities and ambition;
● will do well in stable situations, with limited competitive threat.
Deal Maker leaders who attract followers largely because of their energy and obsession with the excitement of anything new ; thrive on change and bring this to life by seeking out or creating opportunities Because they are adept at challenging norms and accepted wisdom, they frequently break the mould and are innovative and exciting leaders Bored easily, they want to move on, with little regard for the legacy they might leave, the nature of the enterprise they might create or the damage they might do by not following through to sustain success in the very thing they have created
● excellent at breaking the mould and trying new things;
● narrow motivational focus on the excitement of the new or different;
● obsessed with goals that, below a veneer of conviction, are chiefly selfserving;
● are not above shading the truth and distorting the facts to suit their own ends or win the argument;
● get bored easily;
● often talented at building businesses from small beginnings through multiple acquisitions;
● attract followers who gain from access to new challenges and opportunities;
● inspire loyalty and hard work because of their sense of adventure and willingness to experiment;
● tend to ignore or reject those who counsel caution or delay;
● have little interest in building, only in securing short-term ‘wins’ or ‘deals’;
● avoid detail and analysis and usually casually delegate these;
● can be a disruptive influence in stable enterprises that need to focus on delivery.
Administrator can be excellent ‘doers’ or ‘strategic executors’ who are crystal clear about what needs to be achieved and then ruthlessly follow through autocratic in approach, letting nothing stand in the way of the overall objective, and are likely to prefer detailed and rigorous project plans, constant monitoring and updating and tight control over resources and people Followers never put in more effort than is required and will not sacrifice self-interest for the good of this leader -primarily effective in narrowly defined parameters
● excellent in delivery roles (they make things happen, on time and at all costs);
● autocratic, unyielding, committed to seeing things through;
● the ‘plan’ for execution is more important than anything else;
● narrow focus on execution and delivery makes them blind to options and possibilities;
● prefer strong direct control over resources and people; dislike decentralized organizational structures;
● handle change by forcing the ‘plan’ through the change, even at high personal and resource cost;
● viewed by others as impersonal and uninspiring because they have or display little conviction;
● operate in a transactional way: ‘If you do what the plan requires, you will be rewarded.’
Visionary leaders are both immensely exciting and desperately frustrating -inspire people to dream of greatness but frequently seem hesitant or uninterested in follow-through paint extraordinary visions of future ambition, uniting followers in the collective pursuit of high ideals, yet fail to channel energy into the actions that matter
Where they are most successful is where they recognize their own shortcomings and either appoint a loyal deputy, superb at marshaling people and resources to the right ends, or build around them a strong team capable of executing their vision
● deep interest in future possibilities and multiple options;
● tend to be conceptual, focus on big ideas;
● love and become absorbed in the detail and complexity of concepts and ideas;
● grab people’s attention because of their evident excitement and passion for an idea or aspiration;
● tend to see and present difficulties as opportunities – unquenchably optimistic;
● in times of crisis or setbacks, offer bold new ideas and alternatives as solutions and may therefore be seen as brilliant strategists;
● need a loyal, robust and understanding deputy who can translate concepts and ambitions rapidly into implementable action;
● find it hard to concentrate on the practicalities of, and obstacles to, executing plans;
● can neglect short-term exigencies while their gaze is on the long-term and bigger picture;
● often prefer entrepreneurial roles, where there is the excitement of building a business or something new.
Serial Entrepreneur leaders who are imaginative, but calculating, gamblers They want to create opportunities that they believe in and see them come to fruition. In pursuing these opportunities they display huge energy and commitment, sweeping people along with them because they make seemingly impossible challenges achievable. Their interest is not in steady state or stable enterprises: they thrive on change and Trust figures highly for them: because they commit so much of themselves to the goals they pursue, they want others to do the same. They care deeply about their legacy creating change . But their dislike of routine and of the detail of implementation means they get bored quickly
● generate excitement for the things they care about;
● thrive on change and making change happen;
● imaginative, often innovators in one or a number of fields;
● unite people in aspirational goals because of the force of their convictions;
● rely on trusting others to help them achieve their goals and leave a legacy;
● attract followers who gain from access to new challenges and opportunities;
● dislike routine and detail of implementation;
● ignore those who counsel caution or delay unless the issue or action they are contemplating conflicts with their own convictions;
● ‘It can’t be done,’ drives them to say, ‘I must do it.’
Spin Doctor leaders who seem to be everything a leader should be, but whose behaviour often seems inconsistent, self-serving or even at times downright corrupt. They have underdeveloped conviction, do everything else with aplomb. They are prepared to challenge conventional wisdom and accepted notions and push for real change. They organize superbly and channel effort to make things happen. But… people are always slightly uncomfortable with these leaders. They sense the absence of a moral centre. at the heart of these individuals is overwhelming self-interest – leadership for them is important only in how it ultimately serves their own personal needs and ambitions
● capable leaders in the short-term;
● self-interest at the heart of their leadership behaviour;
● make decisions inconsistently: on the basis of rational, economic or business logic but often overlaid with a keen eye for how it will bolster their own position, status, wealth or advancement;
● confident and self-assured;
● attract followers through their self-assurance and charm, but typically fall out with many of them in time;
● usually articulate, convincing and capable influencers;
● are not above shading the truth and distorting the facts to suit their own ends or win the argument;
● tend to move on before their self-interest brings them to account;