I was in a meeting recently, and a Senior Executive said, “I want everyone singing from the same hymn sheet”. I looked around the room, and there was silence. My response was, “…. Yes, but what are the words to the hymn? What is the tune, the melody? How many people are in the choir?”
Just telling people to do something, because you are in a position of power doesn’t necessarily influence or encourage change to take place. It can decrease their working capacity. You have to go deeper.
The people that work for you grow the business; you can increase their working capacity through your leadership, which in turn increases your ability to accomplish great things. Putting people on the company bus and giving them the song sheet isn’t enough. They need to be seated in the right place, they need to know the direction the bus is going in and why, they need to know what the impact is if they travel in the wrong direction, and what success looks like when they move in the right direction.
It doesn’t matter how talented you are as a person, if your leadership skills don’t take people with you on a journey, then people won’t follow your lead and they will never reach their full potential, which is necessary to build a successful business.
Leadership is ongoing, every day – it is a process of listening, observing and learning – only then can you grow as a leader and influence how the hymn needs to be sung.
By Anita Bhangoo
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