Leadership – Critical for Success – How to Excel in Your Job
Peter Drucker said it all when he said, “Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things”. *
Any road map for dynamic leadership will include:
1. Seeing the big picture. Picture in your “mind’s eye” the objectives of the organization (or your team, department or business unit). Don’t engage in or permit others to engage in any activity that doesn’t get you closer to achieving those objectives. Sure – every now and then a re-grouping is called for to get back on track… and every now and then some “pro bono” effort is needed….but don’t let extraneous “things” get in the way of pursuing the organization’s objectives.
2. Making sure subordinates are fully informed as to the objective(s) and buy into them. This often involves a discussion of “why”, “how” and “target numbers”. Give them the parameters of action that can – and can’t – be taken; budgetary limits on spending and any other broad guidelines. Communicate clear and concise expectations of results.
3. Monitoring progress – but not hovering. Let staff do their thing… your monitoring is to prevent disaster, not minor mistakes or errors. “Doing things their own way” may well result in minor errors or mistakes. Make any mistake or error a learning process; risk-taking is inherent in the pursuit of success. Remember – “You can’t make an omelet without breaking a few eggs!”
4. Measuring progress regularly. Benchmark progress against targets, and charge staff with developing plans to address shortfalls or to capitalize on above-target results. Guide their problem solving…but don’t do it for them.
5. Making sure every team member “sweats the small stuff”. One of John Wooden’s maxims for success is, “It’s the little details that are vital. Little things make big things happen”. Every team member needs to acknowledge that each and every task or action needs to be on-target, on-time and error-free. Sloppy execution is a sign of sloppy management. Sloppy management is a sign of poor leadership.
6. Recognizing and rewarding performance…publicly. People like to be winners. The incremental achievement of targeted objectives determines who the winners are; it is the job of leadership to recognize and reward those individuals and teams. Create programs and mechanisms to regularly and publicly recognize those who achieve and set the standard for others.
OK… six components of effective leadership. Rate yourself on a 1-5 scale for each:
One or two points – I haven’t a clue where to begin
Three points – I am progressing but I have a ways to go
Four points – I am doing well!! Now it’s time to fine-tune
Five points – Ain’t no such thing as a five… always room to improve.. give yourself a 4.7 or 4.8
Now – add up your points – maximum of 30 possible (6 x 5). Anything less than a twenty means you have your work cut out for yourself. Twenty-five or better – congratulations – Drucker would be proud of you. But don’t rest… keeping it going requires constant attention. Good luck!!
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