Working for the Greater Good
Most will agree that great leaders act for the best of the organization but, let's dig deeper and discuss what the really means and ask yourself is this you? I have worked with several companies in the past where even owners didn’t necessarily focus on the greater good. Surprising because one would think that even an owner would want what is best, which drives revenue and profitability. You might read this and ask yourself the question have you ever worked for someone that promotes someone of less skill but tied to a relationship? Or have you ever seen two separate people punished differently for the same issue? Both of these are examples of not operating for the greater good. Each and every action of a leader not operating for the greater good is noticed by all. It is amplified across the organization and can be heard in the halls by each employee. It drives down morale and it decreases employee engagement which costs real money. Bain & Company (a global management consulting firm) surveyed 2,000 employees and found that those surveyed believe that effective leaders reflect their company’s context, strategy, business model, and culture. So what about you?
- Hold yourself accountable first and foremost - This is classic “leading by example” tool. If you are holding yourself accountable others will follow with their actions. In a 2017 online article on the Bain & Company website, they cite an example of-of Alan Mulally, who was brought onboard at Ford to help turn around their business, applauding Mark Fields (who eventually became his successor) for admitting to a failure in an executive meeting. Mulally says “That was pretty much unheard-of at Ford, and it set the tone for the open and honest communications required for a new culture at the company.
- Be open to new ideas, perspectives, and discussion - Undoubtedly you’ve spent a lot of time, money and effort hiring senior level people to help build, grow and set your organization up for success so trust their ideas and solutions.
- Your decisions should ALWAYS be aligned with the company’s vision including your own actions and attitude, again the “leading by example” rule.
- Remember that becoming an effective leader takes time and it’s not a journey you have to go alone.
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