Leading Means Engaging
Do your teams have a voice or a vote?
Decision Making in Uncertain Times by Aaron De Smet and Leigh Weiss from McKinsey feels like it’s from another era although it only dates back to March 2020.
In it, De Smet and Weiss provide guidelines for better, faster decision-making. You can skip the intro and jump straight to section 2 “Involve more people.” De Smet and Weiss lay out a simple way to involve more people in the decision-making process without giving the actual decision-making power away.
My favorite takeaway of the four steps? “Be clear that everyone has a voice but not a vote.”
My takeaway: I mean, this blew my mind! In the past, I sometimes made decisions that went against my gut. When I’d hear a differing opinion, I felt the subconscious need to accommodate it. But I couldn’t quite put my finger on why. I realise now I wasn’t distinguishing between voice and vote. It’s important we identify which stakeholders have a voice – and who actually gets a vote. It requires inner clarity and strength to not feel obliged to follow with what others think should be done. As a concept, super clear and simple.
Do you remember your first time?
Being a leader, that is. Kristi Hedges, in this Forbes piece, Don’t Have A Leadership Vision? Here’s Where To Find It.” Originally, this piece was written for employees who, when moved to a leadership position, are faced with the need to learn how to communicate a vision.
Let’s be honest: most of us owners/founders started a company not because we were great leaders but because we had an idea to do something in a better way. And – bam! – we suddenly find ourselves in a position where we have to lead. So how did we learn how to do this?
My takeaway: I strongly believe with Hedges’ belief that “Every leader has to become a leader for the first time, and therefore, most of what we’re expected to possess we have to develop.”
This piece distills three core aspects that I see often missing in companies that I work with:
- Context Creating: Putting the vision into a bigger context allows others to embrace it more easily
- Inclusive: Involving the team in the development of the founder’s vision gets all more invested in it
- Active: Communicate that vision, over and over and over again. Don’t underestimate the time it takes to remember it
To see the rest, skip the intro and jump right to the ‘Context Creating’ portion of the article. Worth the read!
Want to get your team committing to bigger goals?
Love him or hate him, you can’t argue that Jeff Bezos doesn’t have some influential ideas on team leadership. In this Inc. piece, Carmine Gallo shows how Bezos aligns his team by requiring them to write a future press release.
The idea is simple: by making the team sit down and envision what that new product or service will look like once it’s done, he brings clarity to the development process.
My takeaway: What’s more, he also creates commitment and buy-in. I won’t go into too much detail here but check out this read to get the four guidelines that he defined for his teams to write these press releases (number 2 is perfect for any client service business).
When you think about it, this press release idea is a little bit like the idea of working on your obituary to think about what you want to accomplish in your career – though maybe less morbid!
Thanks for taking the time.
If any of these articles sparked your interest – or if you’ve read anything great on leadership recently – feel free to drop me a line.
Until next time.
This blog was submitted by Jason Green, Professional EOS Implementer®
m: +44 (0)7957 175 308
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