Great Leaders are seldom born great
Your Simple Leadership Lesson:
It’s not difficult to tell when a Leader has rough spots. Unless you have absolutely no experience or background leading or being led yourself. Even then, you can sense when something is missing.
Sometimes it’s the talk.
- Too basic. Stating terms in Blinding Flashes of the Obvious.
- Confusing. Explaining basic concepts in an elegant manner when 1+1=2.
- Wandering. Ending up in Timbuktu when Boise was the destination.
- Unfocused. Addressing World Hunger when serving breakfast is the issue.
Sometimes it’s the walk.
- Preferential treatment
- Not giving or taking credit for the staff’s good work
- Behavior at odds with stated norms and rules
In many cases, organizations throw new leaders to the wolves.
Promotion. Assignment. Done.
“Here’s your new group. Have fun!” I’ve seen it too many times. It’s not the new Leader’s fault. And the result? Casualties. Dead bodies. Wreckage. It’s shameful and costly. And it’s totally avoidable.
There is typically no “handbook” or instruction manual for new leaders. Sure, bookshelves are full of Self and Personal Development volumes…
But that’s not what is needed. Not by a long shot.
I know many organizations that do a great job developing leadership skills. BEFORE the promotion is given. They invest. Do it right
But all of us should demand that the companies we work for, the organizations we belong to get serious about assessing and developing leaders. Up and comers, new leaders, and existing leaders too.
Let’s not assume. Don’t expect leaders will “get it” as they go along. That through osmosis they will magically pick up the needed skills and experiences. That eventually, a new or existing leader will become GREAT.
And don’t assume that top performers will necessarily want or that they should be leaders. Ask. Assess. Then develop.
Our organizations, teams, people, deserve better than that.
Let’s get formal. Let’s do it right.
Let’s get serious and stop inflicting damage on our people
Let’s all demand that Leaders be developed.
“Leadership is not about titles, positions or flowcharts. It is about one life influencing another.”
― John C. Maxwell