Welcome to my latest edition of my Reflections on Leadership article series, a recent addition to my Operation Melt blog.
What does this have to do with fitness and my weight loss journey? Nothing!
My goal for Operation Melt is to help you melt away all of the obstacles to achieving your goals, not just your fitness goals. So, helping us all become better leaders is fully aligned with that mission. Maybe this will help achieve the broader vision for Operation Melt...
To create a world where goals never die of loneliness.
Thank you for reading my weekly reflections on what it means to be a great leader. I hope that these thoughts can help you with your own leadership development journey.
Please feel free to share your perspective on this topic, my Reflections on Leadership series or anything else via a comment on this post, a share on social media or message me directly.
Leaders are predictable
Have you ever worked for leader who is a complete rollercoaster ride?
You know the type of leader I am talking about, right? The kind of leader where you have to evaluate what kind of mood they are in before speaking up. The kind of leader where you have to try to read their face in real time to figure out what they are thinking. The kind of leader who will react differently to the same situation every day.
There are two major obstacles with this kind of leader. First, their people are constantly on edge and are less confident because they don’t know where they stand. This causes their teams to be less productive because they have to walk on eggshells. Second, these leaders don’t usually follow any kind of process and react in the moment purely based on instincts. As such, their results tend to be less consistent and more coincidental.
Because of this, the best leaders tend to be those who are more consistent and more predictable. In fact, at their best moments, a leader can ask one of their team members “what am I thinking” or “what am I going to say” and the person can answer correctly!
Moving from a “trust your instincts” leadership model to a consistent, predictable model is not easy. There are a couple of best practices that I think will help you get there.
- Start with Shakespear’s advice – to thine own self be true. You have to first figure out what you stand for, the leadership values that will guide you every day. Don’t rush this process take your time and reflect, be introspective what you really stand for. Then write it down.
- Figure out the framework for your leadership approach. This means having some sort of structure for how you guide your every day leadership decisions and how you lead your team. I have previously shared an example of my leadership approach in my article A Leadership Model for Everybody. By relying on a framework, you can remove the inconsistency from your day-to-day behaviors.
- Share & teach! Now that you know your leadership values and your leadership framework, you can turn these into teachable moments. Share them with your team, your peers and anybody you mentor. Then continue looking for resources, quotes, articles and such that align with your values/framework and share them regularly. By continuing to teach and share and help other people grow you also help them understand more about how you think and how you act.
- Set high expectations. Based on your values, framework and the goals for your team, set high expectations and hold them accountable for all those expectations. Whehter you hold people accountable for high expectations or low expectation they will meet them!
- Stick to your values and your process every day. Be consistent about how you think about things and how you approach things. If you’re consistent every single day and people learn to be able to anticipate what you expect and react accordingly.
- Consistency is not stagnation. Continue to learn and innovate and continue to evolve your values and framework and repeat the process. These are always works in progress!
We live in a culture where we been taught predictability is bad and that you should always be unpredictable. That’s just not the case when I comes to being a leader. To improve your leadership, move yourself away from operating by gut instinct and move to a place where you’re operating by process.
Be predictable for your team, build strong leaders and help them achieve better results.
Thanks for listening!