Why You Should Turn Followers into Leaders in Your Organization

The following is adapted from It’s Never Just Business.

What does leadership mean to you? To me, it’s about creating a culture of listeners, collaborators, challengers, and decision makers. Leadership is about enabling your team to self-actualize by giving them a voice and engaging their creativity.

Great leaders are the proverbial sounding board. By creating a culture of leaders, team members can provide the same support to each other and their leadership.

Encouraging everyone on the team to be a leader is good for the team, and it opens the door to let others’ expertise show the leader where growth and change can occur.

I recommend that you invite your team on this leadership journey with you. In this article, we’ll explore reasons to turn followers in your organization into leaders.

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How to Effectively Give Critical Feedback as a Leader

The following is adapted from It’s Never Just Business.

Leadership will frequently require giving critical feedback in the form of coaching, and this article will help you get the results you are hoping for from coaching sessions.Pick a team member you feel could improve in some way, but not the problem child.

It’s better to practice on a high performer, someone who gets positive feedback and because of their performance is usually overlooked from a coaching perspective.

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A Culture of Accountability is Critical | And It Starts with Leaders

The following is adapted from It’s Never Just Business.

I don’t know anyone who gets excited when the topic of accountability comes up.

Most of us see it as a chore, a burden, or a necessary evil because we start out lives with a negative perception of accountability. When we are toddlers, our parents set boundaries to keep us alive. However, as toddlers, we can’t possibly see those boundaries as anything other than a punishment. We want to do something, and they won’t let us! So, we keep pushing, and the third time I try to put my hand on the hot stove, my dad smacks it in an attempt to deter any further exploration.

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5 Ways to Develop Your Leadership

The following is adapted from It’s Never Just Business.

If you’ve been a leader for very long, you know leadership is not about you. It’s about developing the potential of your team to solve problems and enable success.

This is just one of the principles that effective leaders hold dear. If you’d like to develop your leadership even further, this article has five ways to do just that.

The first step that will guide all the others is to determine your values.

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3 Things Great Leaders Do

The following is adapted from It’s Never Just Business.

If you’re an organizational leader, here’s a truth I’d like to share with you:

Leadership isn’t about coming up with the best idea or solution to a problem.

Leadership is about helping your team come up with the best ideas.

Early in your career, you had a ton of ideas. You took risks, advocated for your ideas, solved problems, and moved the organization forward. You were the go-to person, and you were rewarded for coming up with and advocating solutions.

Then you got promoted to manager—now what? The shift can be difficult, so to help you deal with it, here are three actions you should adopt as a leader.

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Winning the Race to Sustain Customer Infatuation

 

I don’t know a single IT executive that feels their teams are driving change fast enough to support the promises being made by their Sales and Marketing teams. According to DXC, 52% of Fortune 500 companies have disappeared since 2000. And, according to research performed by Michael Gale co-author of “The Digital Helix,” 84% of the Forbes Global 2000 have failed in some way at Digital Transformation and more than 50% failed completely.

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Agile, Waterfall, Scrum & Enterprise Project Management

 

With the popularity created by the Agile movement it is important that we as a community take a moment to get clear on a few things. First, Agile is not a methodology of any sort. It is a movement that consists of a 73-word manifesto and 12 principles. The manifesto and its principles as written were intended for the optimization of software development Projects. That said, the spirit of both the manifesto and principles can be applied more broadly and can be incredibly valuable to the success of Enterprise-Wide Projects.

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What Does Leadership Look Like?

Whenever I get the opportunity I ask people to close their eyes and tell me what they see when I say the word “leadership” or “leader”. Almost everyone imagines a superhero type looking off into the distance with a bunch of people standing behind ready to follow.  Ironically, that is not at all what leadership actually looks like.  Leadership… is what took place before all of those people lined up to follow.

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Deliberately Developmental Leadership

In their Harvard Business Review article titled “Making Business Personal”, Robert Kegan, Lisa Lahey, Andy Fleming, and Matthew Miller describe the Deliberately Developmental Organization (DDO). The basic premise of their article is that the DDO structures their business practices on the assumption that people can grow.  That mistakes are not vulnerabilities, but prime opportunities for personal growth. And… when their team members grow, there is a significant and positive impact to the DDO’s bottom line.

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Authority, Leadership, and Connection

 

Just because an executive has authority over their employees doesn’t mean their employees will follow them.  I have seen a CIO’s direct reports fire him by deciding as a team they would not follow him.  This particular CIO was left with no way to report on critical activities and no way to influence the outcome of his direct reports critical endeavors.  This quickly became obvious to the CIO’s boss, and he was relieved of his contract. 

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