I read this article “Choosing your Domain in Everyday Leadership!”. I think one needs to learn for himself which domain he wants to exhibit leadership. Understanding your leadership skills, your boss leadership skills and your team members leadership skills and having a match would help a lot. Taking assignments would also depend on the domain where you are leader. Copying the article for my reference. One can think the value one contributes to the organization with respect to leadership or a junior member can pick which leadership skill works with his strengths. Thanks to Mali. This also bring to me what is value you provide to your organization
Organizations value people who exhibit what is called as ‘everyday leadership’. People Managers are eminently suited to demonstrate this while this does not preclude even those individual contributors. There is increasing recognition that leadership is all about action and accountability and not just position and power. If this is understood right, then there is a leadership responsibility and accountability for everyone. Everyday leadership is the nuts and bolts of organizational effectiveness. Delivering value to customers is all about execution and not charismatic charm. The different dimensions of personal leadership or everyday leadership include being a Thought leader, Execution leader, Change leader, Coach leader, Customer Champ leader or Process Excellence Leader. The choice is yours as to which domain you would like to make a difference.
Domains of Everyday Leadership:
Thought Leader: You are a thought-leader when you articulate your thoughts clearly in terms of the value they create. It is all about thinking out-of-the-box and converting the ideas into pragmatic action possibilities. It is rarely the ivory-tower ideation process that people find it difficult to grasp and do anything about. Questioning the status-quo, being unorthodox and demonstrating a non-linear thinking besides providing cutting-edge ideas on how pressing issues peculiar to an organization can be handled with quantum efficiency will come under my definition of thought-leadership. It is more pragmatic than preaching, more radical than run-of-the-mill, more authentic than artistic, and more effective than efficient. Businesses everywhere provide possibilities for such a thought leadership. Significant progress in organizations if any at has all happened because some people took the role of thought leaders and had the courage to challenge the rest of the organization with fierce passion and often with an ability to translate such ideas into possibilities. One of the young HR managers from a leading textile /garments corporation perceived general lack of trust between colleagues in her organization and had some radical thoughts on how the situation can be improved. She was validating her thoughts using me as a sounding board. She was even willing to try this out in her own department since charity begins from home! All that she would need to do is to press on against disappointments or nay-sayers and some support from her functional head – the Head of HR.
Execution Leader: You are an execution leader when action is your forte and you choose to act and move under uncertainty rather than being frozen. The problem with most organizations is not lack of ideas, thoughts, and suggestions but the will to execute. Organizations can execute better only when individuals demonstrate and exercise their bias for action. Success often has less to do with conceiving mega projects, but more to do with meticulous execution of daily decisions. Meetings are a common affair in most organizations. While meetings provide a great ‘social operating mechanism’ for validating challenges and determining action points, the experience for many of us is that “what comes out of these meetings is people!” Managers who demonstrate the ability to make and keep commitments become a significant asset to their organizations. Execution calls for missionary zeal and military discipline, period. As is often said, “Obstacles are things you see when you take your eyes off the goals.” Yet another characteristic of execution-orientation is that you are not constrained by the mounting demands or pressing constraints. You often take recourse to unexplored possibilities and proceed to negotiate demands and trade off constraints. This comes with practice, patience and perseverance. There is no more rocket science in it than these 3 Ps! Knowing oneself and others one works with, insisting on realism, expanding the capabilities of our team members, setting clear goals and follow through to completion are leadership behaviors that support execution-orientation. I have known several managers across levels that enjoy a reputation that if they say they will do, they will do it without any follow-ups and reminders. You could build such a reputation for execution and become an asset for the organization.
Change Leader: You are a change leader if you lead change programs that promise a more positive future landscape for the organization. All change programs are not necessarily top down or center outward. A lot of them require leadership commitment at several organizational levels continuously. Simple examples would include decisions around making meetings effective, responding to each other in time, being accountable for actions and the like. Change leaders mobilize people, pump energy into them and set goals for implementation. They will be the role model for changes in their small circles of influence and become examples of best practice. Change leaders create ripples without ripping the routine out of disproportionate dissonance. Change, of course, causes disturbance, but by mobilizing people and ensuring safeguards, these leaders make an impact and set examples for others to emulate.
Coach Leader: You are a coach leader if you demonstrate your commitment to building people capabilities. Managers have the capacity to build an organization’s brand as people developers when they invest their time in helping people enhance their potential and performance. IBM, Proctor & Gamble and ABN-Amro are well-known examples of organizations that have made coaching as a pillar for their organizational culture. If understood well, coaching is not something of an ‘add-up’ to the manager’s work burden. It is actually built into the daily job of a manager and every role, function or organization provides ample ‘coachable moments’ for every single manager every day. Coach leaders grab these moments to share their “coachable points of view” with their people thereby stretching their ability to deliver. It is both a mindset and a skill and what limits people is more the former than the latter.
Customer Champ Leader: You are a customer champion leader if you can get under the skin of your customers and understand their challenges and problems and how you and your team can solve the same for the customer. Remember your customer is doing business with you because they believe you can solve their problems a lot better (cost, speed, effectiveness and more). Customer champ leaders understand this premise which is fundamental to the relationship between the customer and the service partner. This requires a deeper engagement with the customer and their expectations often involving understanding of what problems of customers’ customers you can potentially help solve.
Process Excellence Leader: You are a process excellence leader if you focus on continuously adding value to the processes, reengineering them for speed and output and making it more and more customer-focused. Process excellence leaders evolve measurements and dash-boards, implement traffic signals and toll gates for review and internal process controls that help identify problems before they become a customer-nagging nuisance. Every manager can be a process excellence leader while taking help from dedicated process excellence teams that may be there in large organizations. In fact, that is the only way how process excellence will ever take roots in organizations. Process excellence function, where exists, is at best a consulting and training organizations. It is every manager’s daily job to benefit from the coaching from such a specialized team, but own it up themselves.
Rules for Leaders:
No matter what domain of leadership you wish to pursue in the coming year(s), you are going to be a winner and help your organization succeed. Certain basic rules apply for being successful:
* Personal commitment to success. You succeed in your role in any domain of leadership when you firmly believe you will and wish to succeed.
* Be clear about your priorities. Have a manageable ‘to-do’ list and if you are smart you will also prepare a small “to-stop-doing list”. Giving up what is comforting to you personally and doing what the organization needs is key here (training managers, you have a special message here!)
* Set and demand high standards from yourself and your team.
* Focus on positives and possibilities. You often do not travel too far by looking into your rear-view mirror. Occasional stopping by and reflecting is helpful, but even more important is how you plan to do rest of your journey.
* Have a strong sense of urgency. Nothing gets done without a healthy dose of sense of urgency you infuse into yourself and others around you, working with you.
Leadership is a Choice:
Remember the famous quotes: Ships are safest on shore, but that is not why they are built for; a smooth sea never made a great mariner and so on. Leadership is never easy, but then it is not meant to be so either. Please start your new year with a resolution (real and not fake) as to which domain of leadership you would like to embrace and excel in. After all, everyone of us want to become a brand and valuable. Here is the key to becoming one