Thursday, December 10, 2009

The seventh factor

The other day I attended a presentation on change management. The presenter was describing how the leadership of that organization turned a sour, disengaged, highly contentious organization into a positive, well focused organization that the community appreciates. What the speaker walked through was a planning process.

1. Get people involved. Ask their opinion about what the issues are.
2. Get stats. Find out what is happening.
3. Determine the hot spots and deal with those until they are minimized.
4. When hard decisions have to be made, involve the people who have to live with the decision so they can internalize the change that is needed, and more importantly they can defend it.
5. Communicate. Communicate. Communicate. Let everyone know what you are doing. Share the vision. Share the plan. Share the results. And then listen.
6. Apologize and make amends with those who may have been affected by past mistakes. This is the hard part. But healing wounds is part of moving on. Involve them in your process and heal together.

As I sat listening, I realized that the speaker missed one important point. Point number 7 should have been this: Lead with integrity. Place your faith in others and let them be leaders too.

The speaker was the CEO of the company and he was the important ingredient in the whole mix, but because of his integrity and humility, he did not bring attention to himself. But I will say, he spoke from the heart. There was not a speaking note present. Nary a word was written down.

As an observer of people and the human experience, I pay attention to the attributes that make good leaders. And they are far and few between. I would say I could count them on one hand. So I feel privileged to hear his story. Without him, points 1 to 6 would not have happened and the change would have failed.

1 comment:

LAL said...

I have to agree with you as usual, integrity is everything. I have been "led" by people who claimed they were leading with integrity and of course as soon as they say it, its not true. People who lead with integrity don't tell others of their integrity because it is seen and felt in everything they do. It is not something you can pretend to have. You either are integrity based or you are not. This applies to every aspect of your life, not just work. Integrity is not something that can be faked. And without it, I don't believe you can truly have a leader.