Monday, 7 July 2008

Workaholic leaders must better articulate their strategy

Greg Sheridan, foreign editor for The Weekend Australian, refers to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon as a workaholic, an accusation leveled at Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd. Says Sheridan in his interview with Ban Ki-moon June 28-29 2008 “But Ban’s laudable work habits, like Rudd’s will be of benefit only if they produce tangible results ... As UN Secretary-General, he doesn’t have the power to deliver outcomes. But he is injecting new energy into the multilateral system. When Ban took over, he told people his style would be Asian. It would be focused on results rather than rhetoric.”

Ban and Rudd are like many modern leaders I observe. They appear to be genuine in their desire to make a real difference to our world and work hard to do so, however they fall short because they have failed to fully enrol others in their vision and therefore are unable to properly spread the workload. This sad state of affairs has much to do with not having a clearly articulated strategy and a failure to break the execution plan into bite-sized chunks that other folk can embrace.

If you are a leader and find yourself working too hard and think others could do more, then check the power of your strategy. Does it engage and inspire others? And then check your execution plan. Is it broken down into bite-sized chunks your people can take responsibility for?

Believe me, I know from personal experience that when we fail as leaders to break things down for others, we fail to engage them, meaning we usually fail to achieve our vision.

Be remarkable
Ian
strategic advisor to difference makers

1 comment:

kualityman said...

Your words:
Ban and Rudd are like many modern leaders I observe. They appear to be genuine in their desire to make a real difference to our world and work hard to do so, however they fall short because they have failed to fully enrol others in their vision and therefore are unable to properly spread the workload. This sad state of affairs has much to do with not having a clearly articulated strategy and a failure to break the execution plan into bite-sized chunks that other folk can embrace.

You are right on the money with this statement. Just think how many companies could be the greatest if only their executive walked the walk and gave the talk such that they engaged their staff instead of turning them into 9-5ers.

Ask again how many executive actively support and engage their staff let alone tell them how good they are. It really boils down to a short fall in leaders. Managers are two a penny but leaders are a rare find.
We need to redefine the role of managers. Managers manage the people that man the process. It is very simple realy support the people and the people will excel in themselves and hence the business success goes through the roof.

If this is so obvious then I have to ask why is it that so many managers are blind?