According to Jeffrey Pfeffer, the author of Leadership BS and fourteen other books on leadership, ‘there is often some degree of disconnection between leaders’ pronouncements and what is written about them, and what leaders actually do and their success doing it.’
He talks about Henry Mintzberg, a business school professor at McGill University, who published a book on his observations of what managers actually do. The point he was making is that we tend to listen to what leaders say about what they do instead of intently, objectively and clinically observing what leaders do. And the gap is wide in so many situations. Pfeffer believes while inspirational stories about great leaders can be comforting, they are worse than useless for creating change.
While there are countless books written each year on leadership and thousands of courses, schools, programs people can take to become a better leader, improving leadership skills has been manifestly unsuccessful.
My own observations, and hearing from other business consultants, seem to bear this out. Our CEOs aren’t trying to be bad leaders. I believe they truly want to inspire, motivate and help people succeed. However, they get caught up in the reality of running a business, worrying about cash flow, worrying about production schedules, trying to forecast and diagnose problems, and always chasing the next big client, project or opportunity. How many times have I heard a frustrated CEO lament ‘Why can’t they just do what I hired them to do?’ What they are really asking is ‘I created this company on my own blood, sweat, and tears by working hard – I didn’t have someone telling me what to do every day! Why can’t they do the same?’
We all know the answer to that question. I’d go there but I’ve written about it in my book on Stage 4 called: Managing the Managers: How to Accelerate Growth Through People and Processes with 35 – 57 Employees.
All of this is leading up to reminding you about the Leadership Styles and Leadership Competencies Assessments that are a part of the X-Ray process.
You can find resources on the GCS Membership Site under:
Training – Session 6 talks about the Styles and the Competencies
Styles and Competencies – here you’ll find the Assessments and the Descriptions
And most recently I’ve added individual Reports that explain which Styles are critical for each stage of growth and WHY. You can use these reports as handouts to leaders to help them better understand the different Leadership Styles and why they show up as they do. I give examples and descriptions of each of the six Leadership Styles. And I explain which Leadership Competencies support each Style.
You’ll find these under:
You may already offer Leadership Training and Development programs. If so, you may find it worthwhile to incorporate the Styles and Competencies Assessments into your existing programs. If you are broader in your offerings, in addition to using these assessments as a part of the X-Ray program, you may find use for them as another ‘value-added’ service you can provide your CEOs.
These concepts come from Daniel Goleman’s book “Primal Leadership” and it’s a great resource to help you explain the styles and competencies.
If you haven’t cracked the code to incorporating the 7 Stages of Growth into your business model yet, a quote by Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook, may be helpful:
“Ideas don’t come out fully formed. They only become clear as you work on them. You just have to get started.”
If you need some help ‘getting started’ call me. I’m here to help.
Your success. My passion.
Laurie Taylor, FlashPoint!