WHAT, WHY & HOW
- WHAT - develop a systematized approach to leadership
- WHY - because culture is a reflection of collective leadership
- HOW - strengthen your leadership team's connective tissue
3 STEP DESIGN PROCESS
- What do you want out of your leaders? (the "blueprint")
- How should they be leading day-to-day?
- How do they lead through rough patches?
STEP 1 - BLUEPRINT (PLAN)
- To lead leaders, you need a basis for feedback, coaching & metrics.
- Executives often engage their mgmt. team using a transactional leadership style.
- The style fails when standards, values & expectations are implied (vs. explicit). There's no basis for feedback, coaching & metrics.
- Your "blueprint" specifies exactly what you want out of your leadership team.
- It explicitly defines your leadership standards, values & expectations.
STEP 1.a - start with your definition of leadership. If you don't, managers apply their own definition of leadership.
- Without clear standards, you have no basis for feedback.
- Without clearly defined competencies, you have no basis to coach the leader.
STEP 1.d - Leadership outcomes should be clearly defined.
- Without clearly defined leadership objectives, you have no basis for leadership metrics.
STEP 2 - THE BASICS
The three most basic expectations of employees are
- "Do what I ask";
- "Give your best effort"; and
- "Work well together"
These are simple but elusive requests.
Your plan should also address STEP 2.d - "leadership stress", STEP 2.e - "coaching" and STEP 2.f - "communication". These are the 3 things you need to manage performance, keep employees engaged and build high performing teams.
KEY POINT - A communication plan is built off a leadership narrative. Why? Without a clear and compelling narrative, leaders will stray off message and mixed messages become common. "Collective leadership" becomes impossible to achieve.
STEP 3 - THE ROUGH PATCHES
STEP 3.a-? - Your system needs to include guidance on common leadership challenges. Prioritize the challenges as you see fit. Your system doesn't need to address all challenges at once. Common challenges include -
- Just start - take thinking breaks and tackle 1 issue at a time
- Follow this template
- Use "1-pagers" - your system can be presented in a 10-page power point
- Make this an iterative process
- Don't over engineer your strategy - K.I.S.S.!
Q.) Is this a group exercise or individual effort?
A.) It's both. We recommend senior leaders create the blue print and include other leaders in developing the basic and advanced strategies. Remember - leadership is a team activity. Don't outsource the design! Leadership strategies should be developed with HR, not by HR.
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