There are a host of definitions of leadership. I find those definitions that provide practical examples of actual activities that a leader does to be the most memorable. We have to be careful not to confuse a position or title with the actions of a leader. Titles and position are just that, nothing more than words. Just because someone holds a title of Supervisor, Manager, Vice President, or even CEO, that does not mean they are leaders. Leadership is defined by activities and actions. What is the LEAD in LEADership?
L=Listen; Take the time to listen to others. Listening provides several benefits to the leader, it shows that you value the dialog you’re having, it demonstrates that you value the content that you are hearing, it shows that you are open to learning new things, and it shows that you value multiple view points.
E=Effectiveness; Focus on being more “effective”. My signature saying is Don’t Confuse Efforts with Results TM. Continuous improvement with a focus on getting results is a clear indicator of leader. Knowing the difference between putting in time, energy and resources as the evidence of success versus achieving the original desired results will distinguish you from those that are “wantabies”.
A=Admiration; Invest in your “stakeholders” by being fair, integral, open and passionate. Admiration is a by-product of being able to achieve great results without treating others as inanimate objects, whether they be your employees, customers, suppliers, investors, and even the competition. The leader knows how to collaborate with their stakeholders. Admiration will open doors more easily and garner greater support in everything you do.
D=Devoted; Put your area or the organization ahead of your personal gain. Outstanding leaders have a passion for moving their area of responsibility or organization forward and making it more successful than when they joined. Leaders want to be judged on their results and not for their office politics. They are loyal to the organization, their employees, their leadership, and they will not be distracted by the challenges they encounter each day.
Measure yourself against these 4 attributes and see where you measure up. What is keeping you from being a more effective LEADer?
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