When it comes to leadership in today’s fast-paced, interconnected world, there’s no question that the only constant we should expect is change. It’s a reality that came to mind recently after I announced my decision to resign my position as the chairman of the Governing Board at our regional high school in order to run as a candidate in the upcoming school board elections for the chairman of the school board position.
Since making this news public, I’ve found myself reflecting on the past 3 terms that I’ve served as the Governing Board chairman, and the wonderful opportunity I had to be able to serve such a great team.
Of course, great teams are not simply a product of the various people who comprise the group. It is also the result of the actions and words of the group’s leader who understands how to tap into the collective talents, insights, and experiences of the various team members, and direct those elements towards a common goal or shared purpose.
As I look back back at my experiences leading this Governing Board team, I want to share three tactics I used which not only helped to strengthen our team cohesion, but which has built the foundation that has allowed our team to be a productive and thriving one over these past three years.
1. Build relationships to understand the needs of those you serve
One of the interesting challenges that came with serving as the chairman of this Governing Board was the fact that the team members changed every year as different teachers, students, and parents came on board to represent their segment of our school community.
So while our long-term goals might have remained constant, how we viewed them and what routes we thought were best to achieve them would naturally change and evolve as the team dynamics changed with the departure and arrival of various board members.
Consequently, one of the things I always made a point to do at the start of each mandate was Click here to continue reading »”How Successful Leaders Build Teams That Thrive”
When it comes to seeking insights on the best leadership practices, the natural inclination is to look towards successful organizations like Southwest Airlines and Zappos for inspiration and guidance.
Not surprisingly, in most countries, one area we often disregard for leadership guidance is the political arena, as most politicians tend to represent examples of what not to do than what leaders should be doing to engage and enable those they serve.
This sad reality becomes especially apparent during election campaigns, where political candidates expect voters to believe in their capability to lead and their vision of creating a better, more inclusive future, even though their tactics to win include character attacks and sowing division within the populace.
And yet, if we distance ourselves from the headaches and negativity that regrettably have become par for the course of political elections, there are some tangible, practical insights that we can learn from. Insights that help us to understand what we need to do to get our employees to embrace the change initiatives we’re putting forth to ensure success in our collective efforts.
It’s from this perspective that I’d like to share with you three lessons from the recent provincial election campaign held this past month in Quebec, Canada, that help to illustrate what measures leaders need to employ to encourage their employees to embrace the change initiatives they have in mind for their organization.
1. Don’t just tell, but show why this change initiative matters Click here to continue reading »”How Leaders Can Successfully Champion Change”
These days, we talk a lot about the benefits of embracing diversity in the workplace. Of how intermingling people of different cultures, beliefs and nationalities can allow us to tap into the diversity of thoughts, ideas, and perspectives that go with these unique demographic elements.
Of course, sometimes it can be difficult to appreciate just how these differences can help us to discover new insights, particularly if we live in a fairly homogeneous population. As such, I’d like to share the following four words from languages found in different parts of the world to not only show how these diverse viewpoints can benefit your organization, but also how they remind us of the underlying commonalities that we all share.
1. Meraki – Creating work that ignites our creativity and soul
In the Greek language, there is a word they use called “Meraki” which means ‘doing something with soul, creativity, or love’; that you’re able to put “something of yourself” into what you’re doing. In most cases, meraki is used to refer to how one prepares a meal, arranges a room, or sets an elegant table.
Although meraki is typically used to describe moments in our home lives, there is an important message here for us to take note of in terms of the kind of work environment we create for our employees. Click here to continue reading »”The Language Of Leadership”
In leadership circles, we’re constantly on the lookout for sage advice on what it takes to succeed; of what skills, competencies, and/or strategies leaders should employ and exemplify to succeed in today’s challenging, ever-changing work environment.
That was certainly part of the focus of a recent conversation I had with a group of colleagues where we shared what we saw as some of the critical factors necessary for leaders to succeed in today’s fast-paced, 24/7 interconnected world.
Of course, in such discussions, the one question that inevitably arises is what do we see as the one thing successful leaders do that more of us need to apply in our day-to-day affairs leading our own teams and organizations.
As we went around the table offering our insights to this query, one clear thought came to my mind and it’s one that I’d like to share with you as the one thing I see successful leaders doing.
So what is it? It’s that successful leaders show up.
Think of all the times we sabotage ourselves – where we hold ourselves back because we think we’re not good enough, or that we might come off the wrong way, or worse, that we might fail in front of others.
Think of all those conversations we’ve had with our employees, with our family and our friends where we’re not fully present – our minds wandering to what we need to do next, or conjuring up a reply to an email we just read. Or perhaps allowing ourselves to be distracted by the sound of our smartphones informing us about a new status update or text message that’s been sent our way.
In each of these cases, our focus remains Click here to continue reading »”Revealing The Secret To Successful Leadership”