During most of my leadership coaching sessions, I am frequently asked by leaders how to effectively lead people despite the cacophony of information and opinion that exist in our overly sensitive world. After leading teams in a variety of industries and sectors for over a decade, I have found that there are some simple steps leaders can take that improve efficiency, effectiveness and boost team morale.
Here are most critical three steps to improving leadership effectiveness:
1. Primary focus. A good coach is always focused on their team, providing consistent input to help improve both individual and collective performance. Leaders who spend less time completing a “to-do” list and more time talking with, coaching and leading their team have stronger teams and increased productivity. Can you imagine of John Wooden wasn’t available to attend practice or games because he had too many meetings and emails to attend to? The best leaders let others know where they can be found in case of emergency-with their team. Everything else can wait.
2. Pragmatism. The simplest solutions are those that are easiest for others to understand and implement. The best leaders simplify the complex and focus on team morale and productivity. It is difficult to achieve either if your solutions are so complex that most people can’t understand them. Try standing out from the crowd and apply pragmatics. Your team will respect you for dealing with the complex, and productivity will rapidly improve.
3. Action oriented. Most leaders are caught in one of two paradigms; they either leap before looking, or they have a case of analysis paralysis. For every decision that must be made, apply this simple formula:
- Can I make this decision myself, quickly, or do I need to obtain input?
- Obtain input where necessary or to engage the team (optional).
- Make a decision.
- Follow up with the success of the decision.
- Adjust if necessary.
Want to be a more effective and efficient leader? Try applying these steps and your team will find you are clear, concise and quick (C.C.Q.). Just what you need to pull you out of the mire of email and meetings and engage those who support you.
© Shawn Casemore 2012. All rights reserved.