We can’t be our best or do our best if there isn’t a fit. No matter how enticing a job description is, or how much money is offered, make darn sure you fit with the culture of the organization, those you will work with, and the one you’ll report to.
Micromanaging creates minions. We strip others of feeling pride of ownership. Instead, frame expectations (goals or outcomes), transfer responsibility and accountability, and provide tools for success. Then, get out of the way! Sit back and see what happens when others can take pride in their own leadership and work.
Nothing is more impactful than a handwritten note. Keep stationery by your side and use it all the time. In a world where everything is fast and convenient, take time to pick up a pen and be deliberate. Don’t depend on e-mail to always say thanks.
We all make mistakes. Some larger than others. Our responsibility is to learn as much as the mistake has cost or impacted the company. And pay that learning forward. If we do, we are the professional we were hired to be and worth keeping.
Way too often leaders build teams who adore them. I once witnessed a department with signs everywhere promoting their leader “XXXX for President!” When you see tribes forming, your leaders are leading people down the wrong path. Remember: an organization is not about a person. It’s about a mission and a vision.
No one can be expected to follow a leadership team that isn’t in sync. It is imperative that your leaders—at any level—figure it out, behind closed doors. When the door opens, be prepared to lead together. If you aren’t, you will be responsible for the demise of your culture—and maybe even your company.
If the target is always moving, others don’t know where to go. But there is more than one way to get there once it’s established. Be open to suggestions and encourage conversation. When everyone keeps the end goal in mind, anyone can help you go from good to better to great.
A quote from my father. We may be given big titles, authority, make money, sit on boards, oversee others, manage big budgets, and work for big name brands. But none of that matters if we haven’t earned the respect of others. Without authentic followership, the word leader does not exist.