My early work in leadership development and executive search provided me with an intro to some of the world’s best leaders in executive development. After all, who would turn down a call from Washington DC saying their country needed their thoughts on the future of leadership? The Department of Defense and the executive branch thought I might be able to unravel the secrets of what leadership would look like in a post 9/11 world. Before 9/11, I had interviewed over 16,000 executives in every discipline and industry imaginable. I also taught at a number of leading graduate programs in engineering, strategy, and new product development. What can I say; I’m good at being in the right place at the right time.
Now, for the past twelve years I have spent my time as an executive leading several very successful high growth consulting practices where I was involved in business development, mergers and acquisitions, nonprofit funding strategies, and strategic partnerships. In this role, I worked with many CEOs, Managing Directors, and their leadership teams on special projects leveraging their capabilities and strengths to create a marketing leading organization.
My clients and partners were market leaders from entertainment, software, world class manufacturing, telecommunications, advanced robotics, and the financial service industries. I served as strategic advisor to many early startup businesses and created new business models for Fortune 100 organizations. I know this isn’t my bio page. I’m disclosing this information to help you understand why I’m qualified to share my thoughts on leadership. But more importantly, I feel what I’m going to start revealing with you today can make a huge difference to you and your organization. I hope to create a foundation for how we can see leadership moving forward. If we do this right, you should be able to identify your leadership strengths and where you can improve them to have a larger impact on your organization.
So what is the key to you learning and developing these major capabilities? The first step is to understand what they are and how they help you become a better leader. Second, strong leadership is a journey not a destination. Great leaders are always evolving and adapting to changes in their market place. I’ve found most extraordinary leaders I’ve worked with have several core values that they embrace and, in many cases, never change. What’s interesting is there is no one way that these leaders acquired these core values but over 90% of the 16,000 I’ve interviewed possess these intangible assets.
I’ll give you the list this week and then share with you what each discipline means and how to increase your capabilities in each of these key performance areas over the next several weeks. My plan is to share all seven by the end of the year. As you build your plans for next year, you will have a strong foundation to work from in developing yourself and your leadership team.
Here are my seven qualities of leadership you need to become a great entrepreneur. You need to become excellent at several to build a world class organization. We live in global economy today. For your organization to grow and prosper you must become a master of these capabilities. Here are the seven that take your organization to the next level:
• Masters communication
• Embraces ambiguity
• Build strong teams and partnerships
• Changes the game
• Maximizes the impact of advisors
• Commits to lifetime learning
• Cultivates character
This week we talked about why I’m qualified to work with you on leadership. We have just begun discussing why you must have strong leadership to take you organization to the next level. Next week we will break these key qualities down and help you develop a leadership scorecard that helps you build a stronger team and help you become better leaders. See you here next week.