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Effective Leaders Are Driven by a Model
by Rick Johnson
May 17, 2006

Effective Leaders Are Driven by a Model

Make no mistake---this article is about “Leadership”. A sometimes-confusing subject at best. It is not about being a BOSS. Academics can site numerous “Leadership Theories” that may or may not apply in real life. Hopefully, by the time you finish reading, you will have a better understanding of the complexity of leadership and be able to apply Street Smart Rational Leadership. Knowing when to be a mentor, when to be a coach, when to be a confidant and when to make strong, decisive, autocratic decisions is key to becoming an effective leader.

Good managers get employees to respect them, effective leaders get employees to not only respect them but more importantly they get them to respect themselves

“Effective leaders are driven by a model. A model is a tool used to predict future outcomes of current decisions. Effective leaders build their models on the sum of their experiences, knowledge and deeds as well as their mistakes.” ( Mike Marks, IRCG)

Effective leaders demonstrate a respect for employees recognizing their value as their most precious asset and the innovative use of planning and control systems demonstrates a unique ability to balance predictability with simplicity. A leader’s model may range from the elegant to the powerful to the simple but they all have several major factors in common. Effective leaders believe in their employees.They  demonstrate that belief through respect and servant type leadership. They also have a keen sense of executive curiosity. Effective leaders believe in a culture that embraces empowerment; challenging employees to be innovative and creative. The typical old school, Lone Wolf, B.O.S.S. mentality fails to recognize the value of employee involvement, employee commitment and employee empowerment.

“Employees will not have faith in their leader until their leader shows faith in the employees”

“Employees will not show respect for their leader until their leader shows respect for the employees”

Organizations increasingly will be characterized by a large and incredibly complex set of independent relationships between highly diverse groups of people. To be successful, you must determine how to get active involvement, innovation and creativity out of your employees. Success depends on more than just “best practice” success drivers surrounded by a BOSS mentality that dictates and demands compliance. Success demands a superior level of leadership—a level that requires deep commitment. This commitment will not flourish in workplace environments that are still dominated by the “slap & point” or the “carrot and stick” method of management often used in the past. The evolution to a Lead Wolf leadership mentality is essential to success in the 21st century.

Our own expectations often shape our destiny and create the roadmap to what we become. This truth is at the core of learning how to be a winner instead of a survivor. Self-doubt appears most active in people with negative expectations. The culture and environment of the organization are going to have a major impact on self-expectations. This is a critical element that executives who are not successful fail to recognize. Organizational culture is extremely important to successful growth and culture is defined by the style of leadership that exists within the organization

Creating change, managing during turbulent times, fostering growth after restructuring, creating competitive advantage, or dealing with changing market dynamics all depends on a balance of this type of leadership. No one person can make a company successful. It takes a lot of people, but one person with a command of leadership can transfer enough influence, creating enough leadership within the management group to guarantee success.

Yes, effective leaders do have a vision and they support the concept of long term strategic planning. I know that some of us consider long term planning as what we are going to do after lunch but effective leaders look into the future with foresight and confidence in the team they have surrounded themselves with. They create and are driven by a model based on their personal deep beliefs and experience. Ask yourself these question?.

“Are you a BOSS or are you a Leader?”

“Do you have a Lead Wolf mentality?”

And never forget, an effective leader is only as good as the team that he surrounds himself with.

www.ceostrategist.comSign up to receive “The Howla fre*e monthly newsletter and get your choice of "CEO Strategist's Hiring and Interview Guide" or "The Guide to Effective Training Sessions", valuable resources for all levels of management. The Howl addresses real world industry issues. – Straight talk about today’s issues.  Rick Johnson, expert speaker, wholesale distribution’s “Leadership Strategist”, founder of CEO Strategist, LLC a firm that helps clients create and maintain competitive advantage. Need a speaker for your next event, E-mail rick@ceostrategist.com.