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How to be a great leader | Stephen Wise | Integration Professionals

Three skills you can work on.
Vision, Clarity, and Effective Decision-making.

Colin Powell, the retired US Four-Star General says to remain calm and be kind. He also has a rule - to have a demanding vision. Vision, he says, is our destination.

Have a Vision of the future

Vision, what is it? Where do I find it?

Vision is not “Establishing vaccination guidelines and agreements, activating a network of furloughed retail workers, and implementing a military supply-chain technology for transportation and storage.” That is the strategy.

Vision is not “Vaccinating all the citizens against COVID by September 2021”. That is a goal, that will be driven by the Strategy.

Vision is higher than that. Vision is not something that exists today. It is something that is imagined that could be created in the future.

Developing a compelling vision is done by looking into yourself. What are your beliefs? What do you believe is possible? Figuring out who you are, why you are here, and what is most valuable to you.

Cultivating vision is a process. It does not emerge during an off-site, or from reading leadership philosophies, or watching an inspiring movie.

To be visionary you need to set aside significant time to percolate these questions.

Provide Clarity of desired results

Bruce Lee may have said, “The successful warrior is the average person, with laser-like focus.” Results require change. Without change there is no result. Motivating anyone to change is expecting them to work towards the unseen and unknown. At every level of challenge this is a fundamental issue that needs an answer every day.

Giving your team the answer they need is not difficult, your job is to provide clarity.

You need to communicate to your team the information they need to risk working on the unseen and unknown.

Explain to your team what is most important. Work with them so they understand why the choices made are the best choices. When the team is aligned on what is most important they will have clarity on the desired results.

Demonstrate effective Decision making

Nelson Mandela said that “Action without vision is only passing time. Vision without action is merely daydreaming. But vision with action can change the world.” Standing on the shoulders of giants, I say the sum of the actions will not be productive without a robust decision-making process.

The problem with change is that, only after starting, on the way to achieving results, does the solution emerge. The detail is previously unknown on what is required, how it will come together, and what is needed. Leaders who make the mistake of communicating their vision from on high, hiring the best team, and delegating all responsibility for results will be in for a surprise.

Leaders need to reserve time to develop vision and they need to be effective at engaging others to deliver lofty goals. However, do not let go of the steering wheel and don’t look away from the dashboard.

You need to ensure that everyone is aware of and reliant on a process for obtaining your decisions on how the strategy and goals are to being met. You need to ensure that you are aware of and broadly communicating key decisions to all stakeholders. If you miss this – you will more than likely not recognise the final product.

Questions for you to ponder.

  1. What would be an example of a Vision that is supported by the vaccination goal and strategy mentioned above?
  2. How have great leaders from demonstrated these three skills of Vision, Clarity, and Decision-making? (e.g., George Washington, Martin Luther King Jr., Captain Kirk)

STEPHEN D WISE

INTEGRATION PROFESSIONALS

DRAMATICALLY IMPROVE TRACTION



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