Leadership Effectiveness: Superhuman?

Leadership Effectiveness: Superhuman?People in leadership roles are expected to be superhuman. Leaders might conclude that from others’ behavior or comments, or they might be the ones who put that level of pressure on themselves. We believe that you do not have to be superhuman, but what we do know is that it is essential to be committed to self-improvement if you want to be a great leader (see last month’s Breakaway Performance Leadership Effectiveness: Your best self = Your best leadership).

Some facets of effective leadership are givens, such as understanding the drivers of success in your role and your organization — and then using that understanding to deliver on your organization’s mission, vision, values, and targets, both financial and nonfinancial. Demonstrate credibility. Exhibit authenticity. Hold people accountable. Achieve results. Encourage diversity. Drive innovation. Ensure sustainability. And the list of required attributes just keeps on growing with changes in environmental, socio-political, geographic, market, and scientific conditions.

As a well-rounded human, you also want to be a good parent, support your own parents, serve your community — achieve your financial goals — and generally enjoy your life. You cannot keep up with all of that without staying healthy and maintaining work-life balance.

How would all of this be possible? In a time of incredible uncertainty and world distress, effective leadership is increasingly challenging. Executive Coaching Network, Inc. (EXCN) suggests maintaining focus on these five contributors to long-term success despite the unexpected:

  1. Create and follow a stay-well plan for yourself that incorporates mental, physical, spiritual, financial, relationship, and community wellness.
  2. Distribute your own leadership energy intentionally. Use your leadership energy to do what fits and suits your role and which you know will positively impact important goals. Always delegate what others could do just as well (or better!) than you. Remember, delegating can empower your up-and-comers.
  3. Scout internal and external data sources continuously for information that will help you stay ahead of any potential strategic calamities: a pandemic, war, financial crises, insurrection, significant changes in weather, the great resignation, quiet quitting, or recession. To ensure long-term success, prepare attentively, adapt rapidly, and execute expertly, regardless of the unexpected. 
  4. Develop a rigorous plan to attract, develop, promote, and retain the best people. Get them in the right roles so they can flourish. 
  5. Mobilize, inspire, coach, and develop all your teams to high performance.

These five recommendations require your daily intention, attention, commitment, and discipline, as well as humility and grace, and a sense of humor.

Now is the time to round out your plan to stay on top of your game despite possible chaos that affects the business. Are you ready for any eventuality? How can you ensure your team also excels and delivers?

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