Don’t waste time with assumptions as a leader. And don’t think people should just get it. They won’t unless you tell them.
Be sure to pat someone on the back for a job well done. Ask about your employee’s kids or pet. Host a team lunch to build camaraderie. These are all good things, but they are not the basic elements of leadership. They won’t prevent injuries, to stay with the metaphor. Poor performance is the most painful leadership injury and to prevent it we need to do the basics.
DOING is where the inspiration comes from. We must get comfortable with being good at being bad initially. But we must start DOING to find our inspiration. And, no, not just once or twice. Over and over until it becomes a habit. Finding inspiration is actually hard work because it comes from the DOING.
Showing integrity and doing the right thing is only part of the integrity equation. This is because we are human and we all make mistakes. So, if the culture you are propping up in the name of integrity is that you never make mistakes, then there is a problem. The ability to be honest and admit your mistakes is every bit as important in the integrity equation as simply doing the right thing. Because honestly, admitting a mistake is the right thing to do.
As leaders we can let our emotions inspire us to act, but we cannot act emotionally. Allowing the emotions that inspired you to act into your decision making or planning process will limit your objectivity and steer you away from being methodical and …. UN-emotional. And believe me, methodical and unemotional is where you need to be when you decide to plan, act, and ultimately find success.
There are countless ways to describe leadership and leaders, so let’s get a little raw and discuss my favorite, “The Disruptor.” Leadership fires me up and disruptive leadership really fires me up. So, when I meet a disruptive leader, well, I get fired up. Today I’m fired up because I think I just met one on a podcast that I co-host. There’s a new company called Civil and it was founded by Matthew Iles. Matthew and Civil are taking on the journalism industry with words like blockchain, decentralization, honesty, and accountability. Most importantly, he doesn’t care what he’s up against.
Fall in love with the idea of excellence and you’ll be surprised how quickly excellence will find you. When it finds you you’ll be surprised at the doors it opens for you. And they’re not the doors you’re expecting. This concept should be taken seriously because so many people are in the position of feeling dissatisfied with their current employment. And if you’re not sold and are writing this concept off as fluff, let’s just take a second to look at the potential benefits of falling in love with excellence.
Hiring employees into executive leadership positions is not always a crap shoot. Sometimes the perfect person comes along, who is a perfect fit for the job, who is committed and motivated, and is a great leader. The other 99% of the time we hope we’ve hired the right person based on their resume and interviewing skills. How do we improve our odds of selecting and empowering the leaders we want and need?