How would you define a great team leader? Hopefully, you definition will include large doses of integrity and the absence of manipulation. As simple as this sounds, it is very powerful.
Leadership is so important because you must accomplish most of your goals through the actions of others. Irrespective of your technical skills and abilities, there are many important aspects of your goals that you cannot attain without the help of others. Two noted leadership authorities, Napoleon Hill and Dr. Peter Drucker, working independently, confirmed by observation and analysis that, “No successful individual became successful strictly by their own actions.”
There is another fundamental concept that must be established and that is the fact that “managing is not leading.” Simply stated, management is doing things right, but leadership is doing the right things.
Some of the right things are:
- Leadership is the art of influencing others to their maximum performance to accomplish required tasks.
- Motivating a team member to exceed previous ideals or standards and encouraging the necessary performance to achieve the new vision.
- Successfully winning the minds of your team to accepting your vision or shared goals and objectives.
Dr. Peter Drucker, during a particular presentation was asked to distill and consolidate his vision of leadership and he offered these five (5) guidelines:
- One person can make the difference between success and failure in any organization. You can be that person through becoming a leader.
- Most people become successful only through the help of others. You can obtain this help through the practice of leadership.
- You don’t need to be a manager to be a leader. You don’t need to wait to be promoted. You can become a leader immediately by raising your hand and volunteering to lead.
- The essence of leadership is very simple. It is to help people to perform to their maximum potential to achieve organizational goals or objectives.
- Good leadership doesn’t depend on good deals or pleasant working conditions. Your ability to motivate people to perform to their maximum is independent of these factors.
My take from Dr. Drucker’s wisdom is that, well-developed leadership skills have the power to help you to accomplish anything that you want your team or organization to achieve. However, according to Dr. Drucker, making the decision that you are going to be a leader is the most important decision and the gateway to this power.
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