Leadership, What Does it Really Look Like?
Flying has become so reliable that a traveler could fly every day for an average of 123,000 years before being in a fatal crash.” Arnold Barnett, professor of statistics at MIT, 2013
When considering leadership, have you ever started with Maslow’s hierarchy of needs:
- Physiological Needs: food, water, warmth, rest, shelter, sex, sleep, air
- Safety Needs: security, protection, law, order, limits, stability
- Belonging & Love Needs: intimate relationships, friends, work group, family
- Esteem Needs: prestige and feeling of accomplishment, status, reputation, responsibility
- Self-Actualization: achieving full potential, including creative activities, personal growth
The Japanese word “koroski” means “death induced by overwork.”
Leadership: The skill of influencing people to work enthusiastically toward goals identified as being for the common good. Simply put, leadership is about getting things done through people. There will always be two dynamics involved – the task and the relationship.
If you had to describe one reason why the human race has not achieved and never will achieve its full potential, that word would be ‘meetings.’ – Dave Barry
The approach to leadership then moves to one of two dynamics: Power or Authority. In the case of power it is the ability to get someone to do your will, even if they would not chose to do so; a forceful approach. Do it or else. Most common thought would be that of an Army Sergeant directing a platoon or perhaps a boss letting you know you will be fired. In the case of authority it is the skill of getting people to willingly do your will because of your personal influence. NOTE: Power is defined as the ability while authority is defined as a skill.
If you think your boss is stupid, remember: you wouldn’t have a job if he was any smarter. – John Gotti
Look at a volunteer operation. March of Dimes Walk-a-Thon. Breast Cancer annual 60 mile walk/run. Most church functions. Fund raising for cause. If you try to use power on volunteers, they don’t stick around for long. Likewise, our staff, employees, direct reports are in much the same position. We can rent their arms, legs, back and maybe even their brains; the market will determine the rent we pay them. Can you order (power) excellence, commitment or creativity?
Son, if you really want something in this life, you have to work for it. Now quiet! They’re about to announce the lottery numbers. – Simpsons
Ten traits of a leader (leadership):
- Good Role Model
- Good Listener, Good Listener, Good Listener, Good Listener, Good Listener, Good Listener
- Holds People Accountable
- Gives People Encouragement
- Positive, Enthusiastic Attitude
- Appreciates People
- Treats People with Respect
Why is Monday so far from Friday, and Friday so close to Monday?