26 Aug SHE SAID IT!!!
I just listened to Carly Fiorina being interviewed by SHRM president Johnny Taylor and if you are obsessed with unleashing the human potential in your organization then I think it is a good use of 18 minutes!
Here is what she said: “The toughest job is to have to lead!” Not to be the CEO but to be a leader, regardless of your title, wherever you may be in your organization. Yes! That’s it! Everyone must be prepared and in alignment to move your organization forward toward your desired collective goals. Here is the challenge I am putting forth to you: what happens when everyone is not prepared or in alignment and instead are marching to the beat of their own drums … their own goals? Then we have chaos, lack of innovation, and a ton of missed opportunities.
Her three qualities of a strong leader were:
- Humility: You do not have to know it all! Embrace your strengths and the strengths of others while acknowledging and searching for opportunities to learn from others.
- Courage: Have the difficult conversations. It may be easier to go along and get along but that doesn’t lead to excellence.
- Empathy: Embrace the differences. Speak your truth and celebrate the potential and possibility in others with different talents and perspectives.
So how can you help develop these leadership qualities in your organization? Here are three suggestions:
- Build Trust: Is there a deep and strong base of trust in your organization? Can I and do I say and admit and reveal what I really think and feel and believe? Here is where humility lives. Trust cannot be demanded; it must be earned. Teach and role model how to build trust by developing strong, honest and transparent relationships. Many know it is important, but don’t know how to build it.
- Get and Give Clarity: everyone must be on the same page. What are the goals of the organization? Are all your departments in alignment with those same goals or are they marching in another direction? Ask them: “What is your highest priority right now?” You may be pleasantly surprised or at least enlightened as to why some priorities are struggling. Don’t avoid the difficult conversations that might result.
- Define Success: Share the ‘why’ and let them do the ‘how’. Let their potential shine through.