Stop Wasting Energy – Deliver the Real Results of Leadership
Confusion regarding the real results of leadership causes leaders to waste their time doing the wrong things.
The real results of leadership are people and teams who live up to their potential.
The tragedy of lousy leadership is wasted talent.
6 signs of successful leadership:
- Teams respect and leverage each other’s talent.
- Management has focus.
- Teammates believe they matter.
- Individuals feel safe enough to try new things.
- Organizations enjoy high morale.
- Everyone embraces a “make it better” approach. “Good enough” isn’t good enough.
6 behaviors that deliver the real results of leadership:
#1. Eliminate distractions. Define what matters more by helping people stop wasting time, talent, and resources on what matters least. Try asking, “What are you doing that prevents you from giving your time and energy to what matters now?”
#2. Highlight progress while working to make things better. “How can we make this better?”
#3. Call out drifting. “You’re better than this.” Real respect expects others to bring their best.
- What do you want for yourself?
- What are you actively doing to achieve what you want for yourself?
- How can I maximize your potential?
- How can we hold each other accountable?
#4. Point out what isn’t working with a solution orientation. Lean into awkward situations.
- This doesn’t seem right. Is it ok with you?
- This isn’t what we agreed to do. How can we get back on track?
- We’re falling short. What can we do to make this better?
#5. Set measurable goals with people, not for them.
- How might you build on past success?
- How might you reach higher?
- When will the next step be done?
- How are you challenging yourself?
Embrace aspiration over irritation.
#6. Coach – don’t drive – people to achievement.
What are the real results of leadership?
How might leaders deliver real results?
You had me at “stop wasting energy.” Leaders who keep people on track increase efficiency, productive time, and deliver maximum results. Wasting time and energy is sometimes accepted as the status quo because nobody knows better – “it’s the way we’ve always done it” – and good leaders need to realize it and step up to the plate to implement change for the better. I’m reminded of a previous post related to brevity as a supplement to this post. Nice work, Dan. Thanks!
My favorite point you make is to lean into awkward situations. We tend to shy away from the awkward and hard talks, but it seems to me that the majority of productive work happens in the awkward.
As you’ve mentioned many times before, effective leaders seek to serve those they lead. This includes seeking to find the obstacles that are in the path of those we lead which are preventing them from doing the work we’ve asked them to do, and then thoughtfully working with them to help remove those. Great article Dan.
Knowing your people and their communication style can be the difference between lifting people up or bringing people down (John Maxwell – The Elevator Principle). The better you know your people and have relationships with them, the easier it is to get the best from them and help them be successful.