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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Lessons From a Virtual Computing Environment Upgrade

Preparing for continued growth, Sony Pictures based in Culver City and a member of the Big 6 and the Motion Picture Association of America, consolidated and upgraded their virtual computing platform with Nutanix.

Technology Not Just For Movie Making

Doing more with less, like any other business, Sony Picture’s Enterprise Infrastructure Services group (EIS) delivered improved performance and lowered total cost of ownership of their virtual computing platform.

This is the story of one of EIS’ many initiatives to deliver robust, scalable platforms supporting critical business and back-office applications.

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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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Situational Leadership

 

The problem with leadership is that it’s super popular! The truth about leadership is not every situation needs leadership. Leadership is only necessary when change is eminent or desired. Situational leadership is understanding “how much” and “what kind” of leadership is best for a situation. Asking someone to pick up the copies at Office Depot on their way into the office requires zero leadership skill, because there is no emotional impact. Telling that same person that their job has changed because of a company reorg, requires a ton of leadership because their world changed.

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