Doug: Great, so a leader is someone who produces extraordinary results and around whom other leaders emerge and for the moment we are discussing specifically leaders of teams of people rather than people who “lead themselves”. You mention the hurdles of producing the result and in my experience the hurdles are a critical part of the process.
How does a leader get a team of people, each of whom may have issues or challenges personally, through a process of producing the intended results?
The following pages represent an ongoing conversation between, Allan Scherr and Douglas Hoffman. The subject is leadership. In this post and the ones that follow, we will be speaking about leadership both in terms of theory and in practical experience. We invite all comments and additions to the conversation.
Doug: Allan, I have been reading on Linkedin, conversation after conversation, attempting to boil leadership down to its simplest elements. And while I appreciate the intention, I am amazed at times by the diversity of reply.
Most of us love being known as extraordinary, as being capable of producing great results. Most of us also have at least one or two areas of our businesses and lives in which we’re not reliable for coming through on… Read More »7 Steps To Extraordinary Performance
Whether you’re in business for yourself, leading an organization or performing a role inside one, there are ways to make a real impact and then ways to, well, not. However, when you’re in business for yourself, there tends to be… Read More »7 Steps to A Mediocre Microbusiness
First: I am not in the business of career coaching. Now, there have been many times when I examined my career, and many more when I have been with others through that journey. I have enjoyed the process, as have the people with whom I have shared the experience. We have produced the intended results. In every case, as I see it, the career that will be most satisfying will be one that occurs as a natural self-expression. And yet, for many people, the inquiry into what they really want to be doing has been a long and fruitless one.
I have worked through the following process with at least two dozen people and we have found it valuable. Ultimately, what we are looking for has two parts: first, find that thing that you so can’t help but do that sometimes your friends wish you could; and second, figure out who wants to pay you well for doing that.
A valuable frame of reference is that there are many job searches that are not career searches, and it is good to know the difference. If someone needs a job, then they need a job. A job pays bills and supports life. Sometimes, looking for the perfect career is not the wise move. Sometimes one simply needs a job. Now, it won’t hurt a person to go through this process even if all they need is a job. Getting a job doesn’t mean that pursuing a career cannot be done, it is just that a job is often something needed with urgency, and this process is not that. A career choice can take time and it seems it is best done when urgency is not a factor.
There are two primary inquiries here. The first is the following greatness and passion exercise. The second is described below that and involves looking at the job market.
Are the meetings you’re participating in productive? How do you know?
From the halls of corporate giants all the way down to the co-working spaces and coffee shops of startups and micro-businesses, a popular refrain can be heard: “Meetings are a waste of time”. Is that you? Well, most of the time, you’re right. They are. But that doesn’t say something about “meetings” as a whole, it only says something about the ones you’ve been having.
Meetings can be highly productive, crucial in fact, and even enjoyable. So, what makes a meeting (or any less formalized conversation, for that matter) “productive”?
As I’ve worked with clients and associates to create a foundation for high performance, it is often our approach to deal first with the areas that, upon investigation and evaluation, are clearly lacking integrity (in the dictionary sense of integrity: being whole and complete). In our model, integrity for an individual boils down to one’s word being whole and complete, and it is often easiest to start that inquiry by addressing the already-apparent areas: where are you not doing what you said you’d do, what you know to do and/or what the people around you could expect you to do? Usually, discovering what’s missing in these areas doesn’t take a lot of looking, as we are often already aware of many of them and yet still aren’t in action.
Certainly, taking this route of starting with what we already know is lacking can be very productive and, whether we see things that were missing that we weren’t already aware of or we get some new insight into the impact that our lack of integrity has had, can produce large shifts in performance through very simple, “small” actions. However, in many cases the “stuckness” persists and the actions remain undone. Why is this?