Whats Your Leadership Philosophy?
What’s Your Leadership Philosophy
By Mark Wager
If you want to become a successful Leader then it’s essential that you possess a Leadership philosophy. There are many types of Leaders some quiet, some loud some authoritative some consultative and the list goes on and when you consider the different types of teams and industries in which they sit then the permutations are endless which is why you need to make it clear to the team the type of Leader you are and the best way to achieve this is to have a clear philosophy.
Having a Leadership philosophy not only helps the team better understand what you are trying to achieve but it provides a foundation on which you can build your skills because too often I see talented people move into a Leadership role without a plan apart from just working hard and having common sense and while that’s very admirable it’s not a recipe for greatness. The role of a Leader requires a specialist approach which requires more than hard work and unfortunately common sense is not always that common, you need more, a lot more and it starts with a Leadership philosophy, so in this week’s article I want to explain how you can put one together that is unique to you and your team.
The most effective way to create a philosophy is to ask yourself four questions. What are your values? What is your blueprint for success? What is your footnoting for your team? Finally, what are your expectations once you can answer these questions? Then you will be ready to become a great leader.
The first question you need to ask yourself is what are your values. These are the fundamental principles that guide you. The non-negotiable qualities that you are not willing to sacrifice even if it means not achieving success. When I train Leaders I usually tell them to choose five qualities that you would like people to ideally list when they describe you. Maybe not now but when you are at your highest aspiration. These five values whether they be honesty, integrity, courage or whatever you want to hold dear to yourself will form a filter through which all your decisions have to pass and will provide a level of consistent decision making for your team.
Your blueprint for success.
For a team to succeed it requires more than hard work and a plucky attitude. It needs a blue print for success. As a Leader you need to be able to explain to your team in a brief summary just how the team is going to achieve its goals. It’s fine to have a complex plan but you need to be able to break it down to its simplest form in order to have a manifesto that the team can believe in and rally behind. It’s important that you stay away from ambiguous terms like “if” “maybe” or “we will try” and instead talk with certainty because people are more likely to follow leaders who talk with confidence and have a plan that they believe will deliver success for everyone.
Your footprint for the team.
The next question is what type of team culture do you want to encourage? Do you want it to be a lighthearted fun environment or a more quiet more professional workplace? How do you want people to interact with each other and with yourself? There’s really no right or wrong answer, it’s dependant on the nature of the team and the industry you find yourself working within. So it’s more about clarity. People need to know what behaviours are going to be acceptable. These must not just be something that naturally forms over time because with a good Leadership philosophy you can save many hours of valuable time and shortcut your pathway to success.
The last question you need to ask yourself is what expectations you have of your team and more importantly what expectations your team have of you. This is particularly important when you are discussing what great performance looks like, how it is rewarded and on the reverse how do you want people to deal with mistakes and don’t say “just don’t make mistakes” because people will make mistakes no matter how much you prepare and especially when your team is pushing themselves to reach a higher standard of performance. To be successful you need to have clear expectations and be prepared to hold your team and yourself to those expectations.
People tend to leave bosses rather than companies so the role of a Leader is a vital component for a team and if that Leader is new it can take a long time for the team to get used to a new way of working yet if you are able to have a Leadership philosophy then you will instantly short-cut the pathway to success for you and your team.
The Author of this article Mark Wager has limited availably to coach ambitious Leaders who wish to achieve a higher level of performance.
Coaching takes the format of 1-hour zoom sessions at a date/time that works within your schedule. Bespoke Leadership programmes are also available
If you are interested in short-cutting your pathway to success then you can contact Mark using the enquiry form below.
Posted: Sunday 30 October 2022