“People will only follow you, work hard for you, create and risk and sacrifice for you if they feel connected to you. Will anyone ever be able to truly connect with you, really trust you, honestly give you their all, if you only reveal to them the parts of you that you think will impress them? How long do you think you can keep that up? How long before they become disillusioned?”
This quote was from an article by Peter Bergman in Harvard Business Review, and it was aimed at leaders of the organization. The gist of the article was the effect that showing vulnerability is a leadership trait of today’s leaders.
Help me be a better leader
Aspiring leaders should realize that part of your leadership toolkit is to feel comfortable in showing that it is OK if you do not have all the answers. The new leaders have to connect to the people they manage. It shows that it is ok to ask for help. Show this trait to your leadership team and let it cascade through the organization. That is the mark of a true leader.
The days of being the “answer man” and a hard-charging leader profile is truly over. It may have worked at one time, but in today’s environment, it is an outdated concept.
Asking for help is a strength and should not be perceived as a weakness.
What is important?
This past week, the business world lost a true visionary, Clayton Christensen, who consistently talked about this new type of leader that is important in today’s organizations.
He would often tell the story of the end of life and what would be important. No one will ask how high you got on the Organizational Chart or how much money you have in the bank. He surmises that the questions could be based on helping or developing people.
- How many individual people who you helped become better people because you worked with them or you just met them, and they needed your help?
- What about the individual people whose lives you blessed because you used the talents that you have to help them grow?
- How many individual people whose lives you have crossed have become better people because of your help.
The New Filter of Leadership
This is an entirely new filter on the leadership horizon which means that our goal as a construction executive recently said “is not to build the building but to build better leaders that will build those buildings. As Richard Branson frequently said, if you take care of your employees, they will take care of your customers.
This type of laser focus means that in order for this to come into fruition, we need different leaders in the role based on a different skill set. If you feel that your employees are your greatest assets, put qualified leaders in those roles to grow that asset.
Your organizations are begging for your help. Be a Leader and developing other Leaders should be one of your Organizational Goals.