Leadership comes in many forms and effective leadership is dependent, in many cases, upon the leader themselves. Our experiences, learned responses, gifts, and personality traits all play a role in how we lead. I have found it is much harder to change a leadership style, and many times we spend the bulk of our time attempting to change who we are as a leader instead of focusing more on how we are leading. I’m worried that we abandon the needs of people for the need for sound strategy. I love what Simon Sinek says about leadership, “A leader’s job is not to do the work for others, it’s to help others figure out how to do it themselves, to get things done, and to succeed beyond what they thought possible.” In other words, great leaders help others succeed.
Everyone has needs and every team has basic needs that lead to success. Our team needs help to drive sustainable success.
Four Basic’s Your Team Needs From You
Most teams fail for a lack of clear information. Information is where you give your team the necessary resources; clarity of vision, the why behind the what, the game plan to succeed. We can’t expect a team to move toward success if they have not been informed about what that success is. “The only thing worse than being blind is having sight but no vision.” – Helen Keller
“Our chief want is someone who will inspire us to be what we know we could be.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson. Leadership is the about people. It’s about having the ability to move people toward a common, transformational goal or cause. Many leaders use strategies to attempt to move people, but the only way to truly move people with passion and purpose is to lead through inspiration. A great leader communicates in a way that connects to the heart before it connects to the head.
Once a team is clear on expected outcomes, and feel their heart has been connected to that outcome, a great leader must then begin to take steps to walk a team through the journey. This is where strategy and planning begin to take form. The great coach Vince Lombardi once said, “Hope is not a strategy.” A team can be informed and inspired but without the process of moving toward the goal there is no success. We must help our teams walk the steps needed toward the goal.
Lastly great teams need to see the importance influence plays in success. This stage allows a team to empower one another by holding each other accountable to the stated goals. If your team is informed, inspired and taking steps toward the goal, many times influence will happen naturally. “The key to successful leadership today is influence, not authority.” – Kenneth Blanchard