Articles tagged "Effective Leadership"
It was Friday at 5:45 PM and I was driving in Baltimore’s rush hour traffic. I was on my way to Virginia to have dinner with a client before leading their strategy session the following morning. The sun was shining and all was going well until my tire pressure alert started to flash. “Oh great. Not this again,” I thought. The alert had been sensitive during the winter cold, so I assumed it was the same issue again. Wrong assumption. Ten minutes later, I started to smell that distinctive burnt tire odor. Because I was driving next to a bus, I assumed it was the bus. Wrong assumption again. I pulled over and saw my left rear tire had blown out its sidewalls. I was riding on the rim.
What does it feel like when you walk next to team members as you enter your building? What is your team’s energy level when you log onto a team video call or walk into a team meeting? As you pass others in the hallway, overhear conversations, and observe your team members perform their work, do they look and act excited and energized, or do they look tired, frustrated, or numb? Your team members’ view of their individual and collective work sets the tone for your entire organization, and it establishes how productive or unproductive your organization will or won’t be.
My mom shared an impactful saying with me when I was in my teens. She said,
“You are the average of the five people with whom you most often associate.”
I don’t remember the specifics of the conversation, but I do know she was subtly telling me to continue to be smart in whom I chose to befriend. I’ve heeded her advice and it’s never let me down. This advice applies to us in the workplace and as leaders too. In the workplace and as leaders, you are the average of the five people with whom you most often spend time, listen to, give your time and energy to, and become associated with. Who are you allowing to influence you, access your time, tap into your energy and wisdom, and impact your reputation and brand?
Being able to communicate clearly is a skill essential to any leader. That’s no surprise. Clear hand-off communication is imperative when transferring a strategic initiative to a new project team. It’s a must for business owners and CEOs when articulating strategies for company-wide enhancements. In addition, a 2016 study by Korn Ferry found organizations that were able to achieve a high level of engagement with their employees realized 4.5 times greater revenue growth than those with the lowest-engaged employees. A key factor in engagement is clear communication from leadership. Engaged employees are connected to the company. They understand their roles. They understand what is expected of them. And, they feel as if they’re understood and valued as an individual. So besides simply telling your employees what they need to do and how they fit in, what are you doing to ensure you are communicating with them in ways that resonate with them individually?
The Vice President of Human Resources called. “I need to create a Strategic Workforce Plan for our company, get our leadership team on-board, teach all managers how to do this, and then implement this thing. How do I create this so it makes sense and doesn’t alienate everyone in the process?” That’s a great question, because the key issue is not “How do I do this?” The key issue is, “How do I get the leadership team on-board with me to design, implement, and use this plan to ensure we have a talented and flexible workforce now and in the future?”