“Lookin’ for a Leader”
Ronn Torossian, CEO, 5WPR
That was the title of a song written and recorded by musician activist Neil Young, formerly of Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young, The song was released in 2006. In these trying times, many companies are looking for new leaders who understand and can successfully manage the changing landscape, not just among its workforce, but also in marketing and communications.
Need a Toolbox?
Here are some things that can assist a new leader as well as help him/her avoid some potholes. Besides being a mentor and coach to some team members, it always helps to be a voice of support and encouragement. This means all the world to some workers, especially when it comes to a leader.
As mentioned in a previous article, trust is very important. If you have the right team, set the direction, monitor and believe that they will do the best job. This does more for loyalty than anything else.
It doesn’t take much effort to show appreciation and confirmation for work well done by an employee. That can range from a simple thank you to even a gift or token of appreciation. On his retirement, one CEO had copies of more than 17,000 thank you notes he had written to employees. Gifts can range from a gift card to something that fits well with an employee’s interest if that’s known.
Empowering employees by permitting them to pursue and implement ideas on how to better manage or handle a situation is a tremendous confidence booster. Recruiting the right employees and entrusting them to do the right thing is huge.
Avoiding the Potholes
The easy answer to this is to not get in the car and drive. But if you’re in the driver’s seat, that’s not realistic, is it? And in this ever-growing AI world, management is not yet self-driving. Leading can be stressful but here are some potholes to avoid.
As much as we try, we all make mistakes. If you do, fess up to it, set new directions, and move forward. This sets the tone for team members who will be much less apprehensive of owning up to any future error when they see their boss own a mistake.
However, in admitting a mistake and setting new directions, be careful not to take the tendency to move forward quickly simply to forget the issue. More care and consideration must be taken before going forward to avoid the possibility of even bigger problems in the future.
To achieve the best results, especially after a mistake or failure, invite and be open to all ideas and constructive criticism. It’s easy to take the later personally but remind yourself that the objectives and goals are all well-intended.
It is sometimes necessary to recognize and admit that a particular mission or goal cannot be met. Not every good plan can be accomplished. However, before classifying a project as DOA, consider what was learned and other takeaways. Get input from your team as well and consider how lessons learned might improve plans going forward.