The surprisingly simple truth about leadership
Some of us make leadership much harder and more painful than it needs to be – both for us and the people we lead.
We think we need to manage and control what our people do. We think that if we don’t keep a tight grip on things our teams won’t deliver.
This thinking is wrong. We need and want our teams to be successful; that much is true. But the often-overlooked truth is that our teams want and need to be successful too.
There’s tremendous power and possibility in this, just waiting to be unleased. Our people want to make a difference. They want to use their talents. They want to be a part of a strong and winning team.
Our people want to own their work. They want to grow and develop. They want to make progress every day on things that matter. Let’s help them do that; we’d be fools not to.
So rather than managing and controlling, or getting frustrated at results that don’t match expectations, let’s figure out how to channel our team’s natural desire to succeed.
Involve them in defining a meaningful mission and clear outcomes, equip them, support them, cheer them on, develop them, make it easier for them to succeed, and help them course correct when needed.
There’s nothing wrong with our need and desire to have a high performing and successful team. It’s our primary responsibility really.
The good news is we can deliver great outcomes with and through our teams when we shift our thinking away from managing and controlling and towards these two simple truths: our people want to do and be great; our real job is to help them get there.