4 Key Roles of a Leader
from Linked IN 27 Aug 13 enhanced by Peter/CXO Wiz4biz
VISIONARY. There’s a strong need for a Leader to be a Visionary (ie, like Steve Jobs), because involving people in creating & realizing a compelling Vision provides a Beacon for the future & a standard of excellence to achieve.
COACH (sometimes discovers), but always encourages individuals to use their talents to help achieve the Vision. The Coach then reinforces the expected results, as success of the organization depends so much on “execution”. In addition to the roles of Visionary & Coach, there are two additional roles that round out an exceptional leader.
MENTOR. While many aspects of the Mentoring role are similar to coaching, the significant differences lie in the Mentor’s advisory or teaching role. A mentor is a trusted advisor & tutor. Mentors share the benefit of their experience & knowledge. It is a critical role in developing individuals who will – collectively – be responsible for the success of the organization. As a Mentor you should seek innovation, encourage experimentation, reward appropriate risk taking, drive out fear, to create an environment where everyone communicates freely, honestly, and positively.
Establish an Environment that encourages & rewards people to develop their skills, improve their results, & learn new skills. Actively seek to help people learn from your experiences & knowledge. Develop a culture where people feel responsible for their own results & are supportive of others, as well as provide the model, knowledge, training, & freedom to achieve their own personal goals. Today’s leaders must foster a culture where continuous learning & continuous improvement are the norm not the exception.
DIRECTOR. In the director’s role, the leader is like a symphony orchestra conductor. You’ve briefed everyone on their part, they come in on cue (when needed), & the Director maintains the tempo (pace) that had been established. The conductor does not play the instruments – that is the role of the musicians. Each musician does not decide when to play, that is the role of the conductor. The role of the conductor is to elicit the best possible individual performance in concert with the entire orchestra to create a “symphony” of sound. The Leader – as a Director – establishes the direction for the organization & the people thru the Vision. This does not mean the leader is the “authoritarian” who knows all of the answers. Rather, it means the leader, as director, gathers the input & ideas from everyone in the organization, establishes the Vision, and aligns the resources to achieve these goals. The Director creates conditions under which peak performers can thrive. The director continuously monitors & evaluates whether the direction serves both the organization’s best interest, and the best interest of all individuals involved.
All Leadership Behavior must create an environment in which people are encouraged to seek out innovative ways of doing things – which will ultimately lead to more revenues or lower costs. Excellent leaders use their complimentary skills as a Visionary, Coach, Mentor, & Director to accomplish just that. In the words of former President Dwight D. Eisenhower, “Leadership is the art of getting someone else to do something you want done (thru convincing), because s/he wants to do it for the benefit to themselves & the organization.”
Comments: Do you want to add to any of these? Are there any Roles you would like to include?