People Follow Inspirational Leaders. Are You One?
Learn How Four Simple Truths Will Automatically Put You into the ‘Inspirational Leader’ Category
You have made it to the C-Suite!
Or to head of the business unit or country manager or what have you.
Just because you have made it to the top, though, doesn’t make you a great leader. All it means is that you have made it to the top of the political food chain. Each company has a different company culture and with it an inherent political process as to how to make it to the top. Congratulations, you have figured out the system.
You have worked hard to be at the top, but now all the responsibility lies on you. Everyone is looking to you for bottom line results. And it starts to get really lonely, really fast.
Let’s establish a few basics about leadership:
WHAT IS LEADERSHIP?
Leadership is being a resource to the group. Nothing more and nothing less.
You might be surprised to read this. You are there for your team, not the other way around. If you can make your team succeed, you succeed. You don’t have to have all the answers, all of the connections, all of the resources. In all honesty that’s kind of a relief, isn’t it? So, what do you need to do?
WHAT IS YOUR RESPONSIBILITY AND HOW DO YOU GET EVALUATED?
It is your responsibility to build and maintain a high-performing team around a common purpose. And you get evaluated by the performance of the team. That’s it. Plain and simple.
WHAT MAKES YOU A GREAT RESOURCE TO YOUR TEAM?
Here are four simple truths that your team expects from you. The people on your team will only follow you if you exemplify all four of these. Only then will they get moving and make the impossible possible. Only then will they enthusiastically show up for work, innovate, execute and grow the business. Any misstep in these categories and you will pay a price. So, let’s take a look:
Your team members want to know they can trust you, that you won’t betray them or stab them in the back, that you won’t steal their ideas, their health, their livelihood or their dignity. Simply put, the people on your team expect your highest level of integrity. And they deserve nothing less because they spend their precious time for you, your cause, your destiny.
2) Good Judgment
Good judgment is the ability to make the best decision possible on the basis of an objective assessment of facts while resisting influences of peer pressure and emotion.
Ironically, good judgment can’t be recognized directly but can only be inferred by the lack of bad judgment. What one person sees as good judgment, another will see as bad.
Not making a decision is rarely the best answer. Only when you don’t have sufficient information to make a decision is it wise to consciously decide to wait until you do. Beware, though, that sometimes decisions then get made for you.
As a leader you are in the business of decision making. Listen to your team’s advice and then make your own decision. Your team expects that.
Your team will demand experience from you. Do you know what you are talking about? Have you gone to battle before? Have you succeeded in similar situations? If you are not authentic in how you show up, your team members will be able to tell and they will test you. Walking the talk is essential.
And last but not least:
Do you have a vision that you can communicate and rally people around? Does the vision make sense? Is it a believable story and does it fit into the context of the business? Is it worth your employees’ effort? If the vision is big and compelling enough, it will pull a team, an organization, even whole nations to success.
Doing the right thing at the right time is easier said than done, but it’s the ultimate goal.
You don’t have to be a CEO to be a leader. Everyone can be a leader. And as a matter of fact we need a lot more leaders, but not just any leaders. We need great leaders.
Below are some of my all time favorite leadership quotes to help remind you of what it takes to be a GREAT leader.