What Does It Mean to Be a Leader? Cutting to the Chase

on January 11, 2012

There is a lot of advice out there for leaders – books, presentations, and blogs (ironic, I realize). In many cases that advice is meted out based on specific circumstances, such as going through a merger, entering a new market, or facing unprecedented economic challenges. That doesn’t even guarantee the advice will work for your unique organization.
There is some tried and true counsel that can be applied consistently regardless of particular business conditions or situations. Among those guiding principles:

  • Own the whole. Leaders need to spend more time working on the business vs. in the business; they focus too much of their time making decisions about what’s best for their function vs. what’s best for the business as a whole and how their function supports the business strategy.
  • Creating a shared view. Leaders need to help the organization have a common view of where the business is, where it needs to go, and how every person in the organization is going to help meet strategy goals.
  • Walk the walk and talk the talk. If leaders aren’t being the models for the behaviors that will get the business where it needs to go, the organization can never be successful.

In this short video, Rich Berens provides additional detail on each of these areas and talks about the outcomes that leaders can expect to see if they add these principles to their leadership toolbox.

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