There has never been a better time for leaders to show their colours. Many businesses could be very much more successful than they currently are if leadership was more visible in every situation.
Ask most managers and they will insist that they show good leadership skills. But ask them what makes up those skills and how they are demonstrated, and their answers actually show they are sadly lacking in the knowledge required to improve business opportunities through actions that build on leadership authority.
Here is my take on what makes a great leader in business today, and I have used the four letters from word LEAD to give us an idea of what is required:
LEVERAGE Management Skills: Management is the ability to get the best from all the resources you have available, and being able to leverage those resources effectively is a key component that adds up to excellence in management today. You need to get the best out of yourself and others in order to achieve more than you have before. Wikipedia tells us that leverage is a general term for any technique to multiply gains and losses. So if you think of what you are doing now as the ‘norm’, then being able to leverage means knowing the ideas that will multiply gains versus the efforts you have to put in.
EXECUTE Effective Action: Knowing what to do is never enough. Most managers actually know what they need to do to achieve their goals. But there is a big difference between knowing what to do and doing what you know. Action is paramount in today’s business environment. Without applying the theory, you are an also-ran, a mediocre excuse of a manager. You will be judged on results and the only way you will get results is through action.
ACCENTUATE Business Opportunities: By creating opportunities in the market you are working in, you encourage your team to share ideas and become creative in defining the results you need to obtain. Share new ideas and opportunities with your team. Offer coaching, training and mentoring to your team members so they see the opportunities build, along with their motivation. By encouraging them to identify how business opportunities can be taken, you accentuate the results you will be obtaining every step of the way.
DEVELOP Team Skills: Leaders get great results form their team members. When you develop their skills, you help them to see various chances that didn’t exist before. Your team grows in knowledge, experience, ability, skills, talents and attitude. Developing them involves more than just sending them on courses or giving them information and data; it means helping them learn through their own efforts, so they advance and design opportunities to impress themselves on the market and other businesses.
So, leverage, execute, accentuate and develop. This spells out ‘lead’ and helps you build on what you have already achieved through your team efforts.
Head of Training and Development
Originally published: 4 June, 2014