Leadership Effectiveness: No One Is Perfect (Well, Maybe You Are?)

Leadership Effectiveness: No One Is Perfect (Well, Maybe You Are?)Today’s leaders are expected to have high emotional intelligence, be financially sophisticated, deliver decisions in the face of uncertainty, deliver results quarter after quarter and more. It is rare, however, for a leader to have all the skills, knowledge, and behavior required in his or her job at all times. What is the impact of “the imperfect leader” on the organization and its results?

We know that most of us think we are special. We are until we get feedback from others pointing out what we could do to be more effective. Yikes! Often, we have most of the required skills but lack a behavior or a skill.

For example, Tim, as successful CEO is highly effective at managing external relationships, working with his board, delivering results and managing his time.  The challenge is that he has a really low tolerance for spending time coaching and building his team.

Julie is a “rock star” when it comes to delivering the numbers, however, she is so Type A that often she bullies her way into outcomes.

If we know no one can be perfect, how do we decide what is tolerable and what is not? Some of the issues allowable or not allowable are no brainers – zero tolerance for discrimination, sexual harassment, illegal, immoral, or unethical behavior.

Most behavioral issues are treatable if the person wants the help.  The key question is, can the person change? Will the person change?   If yes, then they have an opportunity.   If no, what is the system willing to do?

Experience/competence can be learned if the person is willing and able. If the person is inexperienced, unwilling and unable, then you as a leader or peer have a different problem.

If we live in a world of imperfect people, what are your boundaries and guidelines for requiring growth in others?  What are you willing to do yourself?

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