There isn’t much doubt that most effective high impact leaders are driven by a model. This is true even when that effective leader doesn’t take the time to define his personal unique model. A model is a tool that leaders use to predict future outcomes of current decisions; a tool that not only enhances personal creativity but encourages creativity in the minds of their employees. An executive’s model is built from the sum of their experiences, knowledge, deeds and, in fact, many of their mistakes. Best practice alone will not get the job done. Effective model driven leadership utilizing best practice is a combination that is an absolute must. Different leaders create their models through different approaches. Each model is unique to the individual but the following three examples explain the platform that models are built on.
The Competitive Desire Model
Some leaders strongly shape their model by working in every aspect of the business and also from learning the business from the ground up. They always carry a strong desire to compete and win. The Leaders competitive instincts are generally tempered by personal humility and respect for the individual managers on his team. Listening skills and genuine interest in what is right for the business are key tools in building a consensus. Belief in the employees is a guiding principle in leadership style. This same approach is used with both suppliers and customers to find the innovative win-win solution. Make no mistake; this approach is very different than typical negotiation approaches used in many wholesaler-distributors.
It becomes a discipline. This discipline circumvents growth mistakes so common in the industry. The other implication of this model is providing significant autonomy to the executive team. The leader makes sure the executive team has a detailed and shared vision of the business objectives and goals. He believes his role as chief executive is to provide the shared vision and make sure that it is clear and also current.
The Elegant, Powerful Win-Win Innovation & Creativity Model
Another variation of the servant style of leadership models is the elegant, powerful, and simple model. This model starts with an open and clear balance between the various stakeholders whether they are customer/owners, employees, or suppliers. It is a truly win-win model without the destructive negotiation experienced by many other distributors. Using this foundation and a long established set of core corporate values and best practice the leader consistently reminds each stakeholder group of the key messages while continually focusing the organization on innovation and creativity. Innovation becomes a key strategic initiative for growth. It is exciting to see the accumulated economic power that canbe developed by a constantly evolving innovative business model and effective leadership combined with best practice utilization.
The Strategic Shift Model
A third example of leadership modeling is about managing a strategic shift from being a traditional box-moving wholesaler with limited growth prospects to a logistics powerhouse that provides significant value in the supply chain.
Strategy is said to be obvious once you’ve had it explained. It is also said that customers don’t see strategy, they only see execution. This model like the other examples platform a strong sense of curiosity about other companies and how to apply lessons learned in their own organizations. The answers needed for major change and organizational renewal lie outside the enterprise and effective leaders using this model are able to take prior “lessons learned” and bench marking to generate success.
Over ninety percent of the reasons companies fail can be traced to ineffective leadership. It’s not because of the economy and it is not because of the competition. It is a failure to learn. Effective leadership will overcome these obstacles, and they’ll be looking down the road at what needs to be done to grow the current model once the model is no longer ‘grow-able. Attention is paid to the lessons learned.
What is a High Impact Leader?
High impact leaders, regardless of their personal model demonstrate a curiosity that can not be satisfied without personal examination of what exactly were the causes of any failure to meet expectations. Non-performance is just not acceptable. Leadership is a key in every instance to creating an attitude, structuring an environment and developing employees as the very essence of success. Although individual leadership models differ in some specific approaches the common thread that links every model together is respect for the individual employee and the willingness and ability to listen with an understanding that embellishes their own leadership contribution to the organization. Best practices are a part of every successful leadership model but best practice alone will not create the level of success demonstrated by the high impact upper quartile performers. Effective leaders create a culture where employees can express themselves and fight for what is right; employees become responsibly fanatical about aligning their resources to add value to the customer and the company. That’s what high impact leadership is all about.
Author: Dr Eric Johnson – http://www.ceostrategist.com