A quick glance at this list of 9 key characteristics shows up a simple fact: most companies are woefully short of talents in this calibre class.
9 Key Characteristics Of Your Must-Have Leadership Team
Cutting edge companies who will master their future need to work with managers/leaders who fulfill the following requirements:
- Emotionally mature individuals (avoid politics, goal driven, self assured but not egotistical)
- Ability to observe, study and synthesize large swaths of technological & social developments, recognizing emerging convergences they can turn into disruptive new business opportunities
- Actively contribute at meetings & brainstorms (a room full of silent, nodding middle managers are a sure-fire sign of trouble! You are not able to access their brain capital)
- Ability & willingness to constructively question & disrupt the current business model
- Excellent ability to communicate (able to create total buy-in across their teams and generate fast response)
- Massive contributor of new ideas & observations
- Ability to confront and point out system failures (not just go with the flow and be 'nice')
- Ability to create Team Velocity and implant new strategies and tactics in a short time
- Ability to live with the risk of failing & learning fast
Our survey of over 150 top managers across Asia has shown an interesting result:
Asked how many of their managers were truly irreplaceable individuals, individuals whose contribution or absence would make or break the company the answer was astounding:
3-5% of all managers were seen as true game makers and game changers, the rest of the team were perceived as exchangeable executives who had no real bearing on a company's future.
Why Should I Work For You?
Far from being just an interesting statistic this percentage has a real life impact on companies far greater than previously imagined.
Companies are faced with the biggest disruption of work force availability in history.
Never before in history have individuals been as empowered to make their own work choices as today. The fact is:
- The more intelligent I am the less I NEED to work for you!
- Intelligent individuals can make a living in a myriad new ways that were non-existent a mere 10 years ago:
- Professional blogger
- e-Bay professional
- Private e-security consultant
- Website owner (facebook, etc)
However: The capacity of your company to succeed is directly linked to your capacity of attracting the Best & Brightest to work for you, to ideate for you, to create with you.
The Best & Brightest Team Members Want To Work For The Best & Brightest Leaders
This is then the key question: Do you presently have
- A team of Best & Brightest leaders who attract the Best & Brightest team members
- A Big Hairy Audacious Goal (BIHAG) that attracts these Best & Brightest who are truly looking for a mission (Google team members don't go to work to pay the bills, they go to work to change the world)
- Leaders who are truly bought into your BIHAG
- A culture that thrives on innovation, openness, exchange
- Leaders who can work with a minimum of hierarchical power
- Leaders who can truly empower others instead of micro managing
- A workspace environment that is truly airy, fresh, light, attractive & conducive
The quality of your leaders and their ability to create an open, conducive, inclusive, vibrant and innovative work culture is directly linked to your ability to attract the Best & Brightest.
From Employees To Co-Creators
It is time to install a wholly new paradigm about how we approach the question of our employee's psychology.
According to the old company/employee paradigm we lived in a paternalistic society:
The company paid the salary in exchange for the employee's presence at the company's premises to 'do his job'.
In essence this meant that 'thinking' was done by management and 'doing' was done by the employee (as in: don't question management decisions, just 'do your job')
This led to the divisive paradigm of white-collar vs blue-collar thinking: two enemy camps made up of the 'unfairly overpaid bosses' vs the 'unloved, marginalized, exploited employees' whose thoughts did not count.
The realities of the present market are relegating this approach to the age of dinosaurs fast.
The truth is that everyone has something to contribute. Starting with the Japanese Kaizen approach of including everyone's thinking/ideation abilities the success of your company will depend on how fast you can bring the whole team's capacity to contribute ideas in motion.
As a matter of fact we need to introduce a new paradigm:
- You are not just employed - you are a co-creator
- Your thoughts, ideas and input count. We want to hear it and we will listen!
Unleashing The Co-Creator Within In X Easy Steps
- Step 1. Speak out the clear invitation to become co-creators
- Step 2. This creates some hope and a good measure of doubt in the team
- Step 3. Share the company's BIHAG
- Step 4. Share with the team that you know for a fact that there are many things that need to be improved/changed in order to achieve the BIHAG (yes, there is a gap and we know about it)
- Step 5. Invite them to share their ideas about what problems need to be overcome in order to achieve the BIHAG
- Step 6. Thank each and everyone of the team members who speak up as soon as they have finished their sentence (remember, it is scary to move from the safety of silence into the glare of speaking up)
- Step 7. Ask the team members to list their problems in order of magnitude
- Step 8. Ask them to pick the 3 smallest problems they have on this list
- Step 9. Ask them to tell you what they would do about these problems if they were in your shoes
- Step 10. Listen to their ideas, fine tune them with necessary additional information and
- Step 11. Release them to solve these 3 initial problems based on the solution negotiated with you
- Step 12. As soon as the team has tackled the problem the way they negotiated with you it is time to praise them , to remind them that they are now co-creators and that they have achieved their first success.
- Step 13. Now sit down with them and tackle the next 3 problems on your list in the manner described above
- Step 14. Repeat the process until full trust in their own problem solving capacity and ability to co-create is established