How do you lead?
You’ve worked very hard for your title and position and if you made it to CEO, you deserve to be respected as the leader of the pack with all the perks, the corner office, a generous salary, and a hefty bonus to top.
After all, you’ve earned it.
So, let me ask you, is this leadership? Is this how you want to lead?
If your leadership aspirations are position-focused, about self-promotion, and inflating your ego, you are likely known as an authoritative leader driven by command and control. As such, you may not inspire others to genuinely work along your side to bring your mission to life.
As we continue to cope and come out of this crisis, we can’t lead the way we have been leading going into it. The world has changed, and our leadership style needs to adapt to the evolving needs of a new reality. The worse we can do is to go back to our outdated leadership practices. Today’s leadership needs to truly be about leading by example, becoming a leader who inspires trust and earns the right to be seen as credible and trustworthy. In a post-pandemic world, your default state must be about leading with smart trust so you can help others connect to your purpose.
To bring people on board with your purpose and mission, you need to strive to become the leader who firmly believes in supporting others and encourages them to grow so they gain confidence in their capabilities and become the best authentic version of themselves. Such a leader focuses on genuinely role-modelling, not role-playing, behaviours that align with their core values to reap the benefits of earning the trust and respect of their teams.
This is the type of leader the world needs most today.
The speed of the leader determines the rate of the pack. Wayne Lukas
Leadership is not about being better than others, but about looking after the people to your right and left, ahead of you and those behind you. It’s about having others’ back, not unlike how a pack of wolves works together. Wolves live in packs and by cooperating. The old and sick walk in the front of the pack to set the pace so that they are not left behind. The next group of wolves is made up of the strongest, their job is to protect the front side from attack. The ones behind them are also very strong and they are tasked to protect the backside from attack. The leader is usually the last one, ensuring that no one is left behind and keeping the pack unified and on the path, ready to run in any direction to protect the other wolves and serves as the ‘bodyguard’ to the entire group.
“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” Maya Angelou
Especially during unprecedented times, strong leaders strive to care and listen to their people, they make them feel like they matter and that they have their back. These leaders create spaces where employees can express themselves, speak out without fear of being penalized, and contribute their ideas and concerns within a psychologically safe space where everyone walks the path forward in a united vision. The informed leader of today understands how to use the vulnerabilities we collectively expressed in the past couple of years and how our shared experiences can serve as a source of valuable inspiration for creative ways to work together to achieve desired outcomes.
Today’s uncommon leaders build tomorrow’s leaders through mentorship and by instinctively leading to nurture a culture where others are heard, seen and feel valued, where the most vulnerable are protected and the most capable are empowered to defend the strategic position for the survival of the pack. The leader brings everyone together towards achieving collective progress and growth, not the unilateral actions of one person. Under their careful watch, there is a sense of unity where no one has to work alone, no one is open to injury, and no one is left behind.
So as we continue building the next normal, challenge yourself to leave behind the command-and-control leadership style of a broken, outdated normal and move onward as a leader who has everyone’s back. You’ll find that others will walk along your side and behind you and will be inspired by the leader you are constantly becoming.
Learning to lead in these unprecedented times and out of crisis means you need to re-evaluate your leadership style, your skills and capabilities, and for that, you need to have greater self-awareness. To develop your emotional intelligence and learn the habits that help you transform into an inspirational leader, let’s have a no-obligation coaching session so you can learn more about my Leading with Clarity roadmap.