People feel cared for and respected as the leader clears away obstacles; this in turn creates a culture that encourages teams to flourish. As for leading change, this behavior is a vital, long-term function to the organization and its people because it ensures the organization stays abreast of the world about it, thus maintaining competitive advantage.
Not everyone is exceptional in every area, but this is not a problem. The highest-performing leaders are strong in three or four areas; however, these need to be spread out and not clumped in one area. A leader can be exceptional in just a few of the 16 competencies and be an extremely good leader who increases the productivity of the company. One strength can work wonders in the overall perception of leadership, raising the leader to the 64th percentile. Three strengths will raise the perception of leadership effectiveness to the 81st percentile, and four and five strengths to near or above the 90th percentile.
One Pivotal Competency Interestingly enough, there is one pivotal competency that is most powerful in distinguishing the top 10th percentile from the rest: inspiring and motivating others to high performance. Falling in the interpersonal skills cluster of behaviors, this competency was voted by direct reports as the most important competency for leaders to possess. It was most correlated with employee engagement, and for many people, it intuitively has the most obvious link to productivity.
Not only are leaders expected to fulfill the duties of their positions, they need to inspire and motivate people if the company is to succeed. However, contrary to popular belief, motivating others to high performance is relatively simple. Traditional thinking is that we can make leaders be more inspiring by teaching them to use deliberate motivational tactics, such as applying pressure on employees to perform at higher levels, giving motivating pep talks, implementing new compensation systems, creating competition, invoking peer pressure, tossing out challenges or comparing their teams to other high-performing groups.
Enhancing these companion behaviors strengthens the behavior. Think, for example, of the runner who lifts weights along with a running program, or swims longs distance or engages in aerobic exercise. If an organization wants more inspiring and motivational leaders, one promising approach is to develop in its leaders the competency companions to this behavior.
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There are many approaches to developing leaders, and each organization has to decide for itself which process will serve it best. One thing that is certain: What leaders learn in any leadership program will have to be repeated if there is a lack of follow-up. New skills and behaviors will rapidly evaporate if there are not follow-up mechanisms in place.
To put it in statistical terms, 87 percent of what a person learns in a leadership program will be gone within 30 days if there is no follow-up, according to Neil Rackham in his book SPIN Selling. Follow-up can be as simple as asking for monthly progress reports from team members, colleagues, employees or peers. Specific suggestions for improvement can be requested.
Mini surveys can be part of the follow-up process. Conducted every four to six months, these mini surveys reveal areas for improvement before and after the individual takes part in the leadership program. There is no substitute for measurement and feedback, and there is an assortment of follow-up metrics and tools that work with customized leadership development, as well as more traditional programs. It is possible to measure leadership in dollars. Boiling it down to the simplest of terms, good leaders create more economic value than poor leaders, and extraordinary leaders create far more value than good ones.
That being the case, you may wisely choose to develop great leaders in your organization. Your email address will not be published. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. Post Comment. How Extraordinary Leaders Double Profits. And you will discover that this approach will not only make your life easier as a manager, but it will also produce extraordinary results. You may believe coaching is too time-consuming. You can facilitate a successful laser coaching session with actionable takeaways during a short but focused conversation.
I have successfully coached colleagues in the time it takes to stand in the line at the office Starbucks and collect our cappuccinos at the other end. Always remember that a short burst of coaching that motivates your employee is better than no coaching at all.
Extraordinary learning in the workplace
You may not be asking the creative questions that inspire Mary to think in solutions instead of problems. Coaching excellence occurs when you camouflage your questions masterfully. The result is John ends up feeling deflated. Do you remember the last time you asked a friend to help, and they made it all about themselves?
Do you remember how you felt? This kind of comment often highlights hidden, underlying concerns and patterns that require further exploration on your part. Performance anxiety. That kind of self-imposed pressure can be counter-productive because it can stop the natural coaching flow.
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Of course you want your coaching to be the catalyst for Mary to discover her own answers. The best way to achieve this is to stop performing and start connecting. You are, first and foremost, a human being. Leader Interpersonal and Influence Skills. Ronald E. Sharon Clarke. Yin Cheong Cheng. Supervision in Social Work. Alfred Kadushin. An Introduction to Contemporary Work Psychology. Maria C. Handbook of Clinical Social Work Supervision. Carlton Munson. Skipton Leonard. Employee Engagement in Theory and Practice.
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