Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Maximizing Your Leadership

Maximizing Your Leadership
March 2011

Today we'll be talking about leadership again. I hope that is a topic that you don't mind learning more about. If you are interested in other topics as well... at the end of this newsletter is a link to a SHORT survey that will help me serve you better with upcoming newsletters. I hope you'll take a few minutes to complete it.

Now, let's get back to leadership...

Leaders (real leaders) have been studied for hundreds of years. Researchers have studied attributes, characteristics, attitudes, behaviors, personalities, intelligence, and values. What have we learned? That every leader is unique and that the truly great leaders aren’t afraid of being unique.  We’ve also learned that while personality traits, attitudes, behavior and intelligence patterns have been identified; the key to great leadership can’t be defined by these things only.

The key to great leadership is in your thinking, your mindset, your valuing habits and most importantly - how you apply these things.

Great leaders are maximizers and multipliers. Their thinking and valuing habits reflect their perspective – not only on the job but how they live their lives.

“Managers”, while trying to maximize and multiply, often have mindsets that may actually result in diminishing or minimizing.  This doesn’t happen intentionally but is usually a learned behavior or habit.

NOTE:  When I say “manager”, my intention is whose focus is on the tasks and getting the work done.  This isn’t your title but rather your role.  This isn’t who you are, but rather what you do. When I talk about a “leader”, this person is focused on leading the people who are doing the work.  My hope is that you have both manager and leader characteristics, but that you learn to focus more on the leadership side.

Let me give you some examples of what I mean here.
  1. Maximizers do more asking.
    Minimizers do more telling
    Great leaders believe in the people they are working with. Maximizers see intelligence as continually growing and developing within their team. They assume people are smart and can and will figure things out. They see their organization as full of talented people who are capable of contributing at much higher levels. Diminishers see intelligence as something basic about a person that can’t change much. When this is the case, the Diminisher believes that they have to tell their team what to do and how to do it. Do you find yourself doing more asking or telling in your leadership roles?