ENewsletter - May 2018
Are You a Boss or a Leader?

There is a lot of focus on leadership today, possibly because we see such a lack of it in our elected officials and in many of our businesses. Contrary to some beliefs, there are few "natural born leaders"; this is a skill that can be learned.

It's true, personality plays a big role in leadership. It's difficult for sociopaths, psychopaths or narcissists to be leaders, but most of the rest of us can be taught leadership skills. For our purposes today, we'll talk about leadership in business.

Leadership Isn't Always Positive

Company culture is developed from the top down. Employees watch carefully the decisions that company leaders make and take their cues from those. Whether you have a list of Company Values listed on your website or on display in your building, what company leaders value is apparent.

When management encourages cutting corners, makes decisions based on financial factors vs. safety or rewards those that don't demonstrate stated company values, employees get that message loud and clear. Effective leaders demonstrate and reward the behaviors they expect.
  • Manage by intimidation
  • Take credit
  • Reference "I"
  • Hoard power & authority
  • Give commands
  • Place blame
  • Talk more
  • Act in self interest
  • Inspire enthusiasm
  • Give credit
  • Reference "we"
  • Develop other leaders
  • Ask for input
  • Look for solutions
  • Listen more
  • Act for the good of the organization
A great leader doesn't build a business: he or she builds an organization and the organization builds the business. Leaders don't necessarily need to know how to do the job at hand; they know how to find and develop the people who do.

There are many stories about entrepreneurs or managers who fail once they're passed the point of being able to do everything on their own. Great leaders have the confidence to hire those with the right skills and let those people do their jobs without micro-managing.

Need some training? Here are some excellent books on Leadership:

There is not one leadership style, but there are many common leadership principles. Developing your authentic leadership style based on the principles above and in these books will ensure that your team will follow your lead willingly and enthusiastically.
Preparing the facilitate the Incentive Professional study session at the IMA Summit in July in Newport Beach, CA.
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