What characteristics do the most influential leaders in your life share?

In each of our lives, we’ve encountered leaders who have let us down, and hopefully, one or two who’ve lifted us up, shown us the way, championed our growth and taught us the lessons that take us in new and better directions.

What are the common attributes of each type of leader in your past and present life? Do you notice similarities in those who were a source of positivity, likewise, in those who stirred up stress and self-doubt?

When you evaluate your leadership performance, are you modeling the best of what you experienced or behaviors that you once vowed not to?

Leadership, aside from any function of the job or fulfillment of duties under a title, is a full-time relationship building commitment. Those in pursuit of constant self-improvement, who are genuinely willing to examine how they perceive their environment, how they manage expectations and cultivate a culture of trust, fairness, productivity, accountability, and balance, achieve an enhanced level of professional success and personal fulfillment that traditional compensation does not provide.

More than schooling and status, tenure or tenacity, advanced communication skills and developed emotional intelligence are the qualities you will find in exceptional leaders, which in my view, shatters the argument that “leaders are born not made.”

“Thank you again Michelle for your presentation yesterday.  I had so many positive comments.”

“She was amazing!”

“Wonderful, it was entertaining and informative.”

“Her staff retreats were well organized and very motivational.”

“Very informative & helpful.”

“Energizing, relevant, reinvigorating.”

Leaders Develop Leaders

In most industries, you’ll find that a significant number of those serving in some capacity as a leader were promoted from within their organization. Every scenario is different of course; and while some organizations have a well-defined leadership development process to ensure the newly appointed ones are provided with tools and support, my colleagues and I have found many missed opportunities and inconsistencies in this regard.  Highly developed and thoroughly integrated organizational leadership and human development programming are often easy cost-reduction targets during budgeting. In studies related to High-Reliability Organizations (HROs), for example, the safest operations, those with outstanding track records for quality and safety, spend disproportionately on leadership and team development, and training.   As a leader contemplating how much to invest in leadership development, whether to invest at all, here’s one of my favorite anecdotes on the subject:

CFO asks CEO: “What happens if we invest in developing our people and they leave?”
CEO to CFO: “What happens if we don’t, and they stay?”

While there is no cookie-cutter approach for establishing a universal leadership cultivation system, there are many models, methods, and strategies to consider as you evaluate what will work best for your organization.

I work with leaders and leadership teams in a variety of ways and under a wide range of circumstances, bringing in my collaborators and subject matter experts when and where invited. As a trusted thought partner, these are some of the areas I can explore with you:

  • Cementing accountability and a culture that is JUST
  • Clearing feedback filters that block message receptors
  • Communicating vision that speaks to the personalities and generations you serve
  • Developing a satisfied leadership team
  • Emotionally intelligent leadership
  • Exploring personality type and communication style strengths and potential weaknesses
  • Leader to leader alignment
  • Organizational milestone preparation
  • Strategic planning and special projects
  • Strategies for establishing meaningful stakeholder engagement

One of my greatest mentors taught me that, “culture is the shared observation of the leadership team.”  She is wise, and this statement is as true today as it was nearly a decade ago when she shared it with me.  It’s something I share with every leadership team I have the privilege to work with.

With all the pressures that come with being the person with whom the buck stops, I hope you continue investing in your leadership growth. You’re worth it, and your teams deserve it.

To contact Michelle for leadership development for your team, visit our online Booking Page.

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