March 14, 2016
Leadership doesn’t have to be complicated; it doesn’t have to conform to doctrine advocated by leadership gurus (many of whom have little demonstrated experience in the art in any event).
I have learned that leadership boils down to how well you practice a few basic human acts.
1. Help others. It’s a basic human instinct to come to the aid of someone in need. When refugees from Syria needed help, the world responded. In an organization, it doesn’t happen as much. When someone is down we seem to pounce on the opportunity to use their misfortune as our own opportunity.
2. Walk in their footsteps. It’s not all about the business; it’s more about the people IN the business. Decisions get implemented only if people are on board with them. Consider how individuals will be before moving forward.
3. Practice what you preach. ALWAYS be in a position to show that you only ask others to do what you do yourself. Loyal followers are created when they see you act on your own words.
4. Keep your promises. If you say you will do something make sure you DO it. When you open your mouth others watch your follow up to see if your intent was honest.
5. Leave the glory to others. Your glory comes only through the success of your employees. Lavish them with praise. Your ego will understand.
6. Show your emotional side. Real people express their feelings; plastic people hide them. “Expose” yourself and watch the magic you create.
7. Look in their eyes and take notes. Paying attention to and showing interest in what people have to say will ignite their passion. A simple act; an amazing impact.
8. Say “thank you” a lot. It makes their hard work and “pain” endured worth it. And it provides fuel for them to do it again.
9. Share your status in the hierarchy. Everyone understands the organizational pecking order, but if you spread some of your special privileges around, THEY get to feel important and will engage on a higher level.
10. Call someone… everyday. It’s really important to connect and engage with people in your organization. Make a point of reaching out to a different person daily and have a conversation about what’s going on with them. You will gain incredible insights into what is going on in your organization, and THEY will transformed into a loyal follower.
Leadership is about convincing others that you are a “real” person by demonstrating basic human acts consistently.
It’s not about practicing textbook theory leadership dogma.
Other leadership articles you might like
If you were hit by a bus and killed…
A person’s strengths say nothing about being a #GreatLeader
6 actions stand-out leaders take when “shit happens”
- Posted 3.14.16 at 02:05 am by Roy Osing
March 7, 2016
My recent book, “A Weekly Calendar for Leaders” provides a view on how stand-out leaders should spent their time each week.
This is kick-off day.
Monday is “love” a customer day.
The first day of your week should be about getting in the face of your customers.
The idea is to strategically choose customers who have been loyal to you. And who generate significant economic value for you today and/or have a high upside for you over the near to medium term.
This is a learning day not a show and tell day. This day is to listen, learn and act on what you hear.
It’s not about presenting who you are and what you do. Nor is it about pitching your products and services .
It’s about opening yourself up to engage and get honest feedback. This day you are in a receive mode NOT a transmit mode.
It’s also a day to honor the people and organizations that have put their trust and faith in you over the years. To thank them for taking the journey with you when there are so many other alternatives available to them.
This day is anything but a meet and greet day. Today knows no superficiality. No “grinning” allowed.
This day is honestly connecting with a customer to get a more intimate understanding of them; to discover their secrets and earn their trust. Their decision to continue to do business with you is at stake. You have to earn their business this day and every day.
Leave your entourage at home. No bagmen should be with you to do the work and make you feel important. It’s just you, your customer and your notebook.
Take copious number of notes. It shows that you think what they have to say is important. Hang on their every word.
Make this an informal event. Don’t make it slick. Have a conversation. Your prime objectives are to deepen relationships, build trust, and learn what you should be doing to serve them better.
Review your ONLY Statement with them. Do they know that you are trying to be remarkable and unique; to be the ONLY ones that do what you do?
Does your ONLY statement address a burning need that they have? Do they believe you live it all day every day?
This day is also about getting feedback from previous meetings you may have had with them. Review your notes from these meetings. Discuss your take-a-ways. Describe the action you took and the results achieved.
Ask for their feedback on your performance.
If you allege that customers are your most valuable asset, shouldn’t you start your week with them?
Check out my book “Weekly calendar for leaders”
Other leadership articles you might like
How a leader can keep everyone in step
How to inspire change from employees who say “that’s the way we’ve done things around here”
Decisions, decisions ... the 5 most critical for a leader
The difference between a good, a great and a stand-out #leader
- Posted 3.7.16 at 04:37 am by Roy Osing
February 29, 2016
When a dog bites a man, the world doesn’t suddenly sit up and take notice. After all, dogs unfortunately are known to occasionally bite people.
But when a man bites a dog that’s different. It surprises people. No one expects it. It creates shock value.
It gets noticed and talked about as a bizarre incident.
Organizations today have difficulty carving out a unique and remarkable place for what they do in people’s minds.
They are more common than stand-out.
Their value propositions could be interchanged with their competitors and few would notice any difference.
They all market more to the masses and give little attention to the special needs of the individual.
The majority compete by trying to offer lower prices than their competition because they can’t talk about value differences.
And, driven by the “coolness” of what technology can do, they push products and services at the market hoping they will resonate with someone.
Winning doesn’t come from being the same as others. It doesn’t result from copying best practices. It doesn’t result from being in the herd.
Success in the face of stiff competition and an unpredictable environment comes from “biting the dog” - providing value that people want coupled with surprise, outrageousness and noticeability.
6 ways you can bite the dog…
1. Refuse the temptation to go along the path travelled by the crowd.
2. Go in exactly the opposite direction to the established practice of the day.
3. Do something outrageous that draws an “OMG!” from observers and a disdainful smirk of admiration from traditional pundits.
4. Attack order of magnitude change rather than try to achieve modest incremental steps of progress. “Go big or go home” applies here. Small steps yield unnoticeable acts.
5. Invite mountains of criticism from your bite the dog act. The more negative remarks the more free advertising benefits you receive. If no one reacts negatively, you have to wonder if your move was bold enough.
6. Study contrarians; those individuals who have a track record of introducing weird creations in the market. If you want mentors to copy, follow the outlandish ones.
It’s all about attitude.
If you are content to be a member of the herd, so be it.
But if you want to be special and do remarkable things, you have to bite the dog and live with the consequences.
There’s no other way.
- Posted 2.29.16 at 07:16 am by Roy Osing
February 22, 2016
Does your marketing department carry it? Your advertising folks? Public relations?
Sure, these people on these teams influence what leadership THINKS your brand should be.
What it should feel like when executed in the market.
They create a brand strategy that defines what the organization SHOULD be in order to meet a particular strategic goal.
But your brand is ultimately carried by the people that touch your customers everyday.
This is where the “brave brand idea” is turned into a “crude deed”.
This is “the coal face” where good intentions are met, exceeded or where customers are left unsatisfied.
Where intent turns into action.
Where logic is transformed into feeling.
Brands are created and carried through consistent ACTION and BEHAVIOUR, not audacious hope.
- Posted 2.22.16 at 04:38 am by Roy Osing