It could be that one of the main reasons you are a successful business leader is that you really know how to talk. You’ve been rewarded in your career for being able to talk your way into (or out of) anything. You’ve been successful in convincing people, inspiring people, and getting your way because of your ability to talk. But, like most things in life, too much of a good thing can turn a strength into a weakness.
A leader may hold the title, but it's the person who leads who excels at coaching and getting the most from his or her employees. If you're on a leadership team, which person are you?
Although many leaders understand that coaching their employees is a large part of their job, few profess to excel at leading, managing, and creating accountability (LMA™). And I've never had a business owner tell me that the reason they started their business was because they loved to manage people. It's no surprise then that "people issues" are one of the common frustrations of leaders, owners, and managers.
"I'm not sure I'm the right person to run this company."
As I started the EOS® process with a marketing agency, the CEO told his leadership team that he wasn't sure that he was the right person to run the business. He gave everyone full permission to speak up at any time during their exercise if they thought he wasn't the right person.
It was clear that he was anxious. He wanted to do the right thing for the team and the business, and he didn't want any elephants in the room.
This CEO was unusual—not because of his doubts, but because of his honesty.
“The roads of the world are paved with squirrels that couldn’t decide.”
This insight was shared by a fellow EOS® Implementer at our quarterly gathering in Detroit in February. It paints a very clear mental picture, doesn’t it? The ability to make a decision is one of the characteristics of all great leaders. Some people are great at making decisions; others find it challenging.
Decisions exist on two levels – intellectual and emotional. Our intellect tells us we “should” do something — expand our business, resolve that personnel issue, refine our marketing plan, work fewer hours, reduce overhead.
Carl Jung famously said, “You are what you do, not what you say you'll do.”
As clear and simple as that statement is, I’ve seen hundreds of otherwise successful leaders behave as though it doesn’t apply. If you want to quickly kill your company’s culture, consider making that mistake yourself.