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Officer Article

All-Around Leaders
Submitted by: Terri Kozlowski
Chapter Director, GA-D

 
"Leadership isn't about position. Leadership is about using your influence exactly where you are.  For teams to develop at every level, they need leaders at every level." John Maxwell.

All TEAMS at all levels of any organization need an All-Around Leader. These are the type of leaders who lead up-to the top levels of the organization; who lead across among their peers; and who lead down to their TEAM members as well as others in the organization. An All-Around Leader leads through influence, not through the position they hold, nor through any power they may or may not have.  Some people believe that a person can't lead unless that person is at the "top" of the totem pole...they fail to recognize that true leaders lead even if they are at the bottom.  We can all choose to better our organization and help fulfill a better vision by serving as an All-Around Leader.

Let's review the principles of "leading down"-to your TEAM and others in the organization.

1. Spend time with the people. This is how you build relationships with your TEAM. Be sure to focus less on "task" and more on the "people" of the organization.  These relationships that are built help you though tough times and give you great joy during the celebrations.

 

2. See everyone's potential.  An All-Around Leaders gets more out of their TEAM members because they expect more of their people and they truly believe that their people can do whatever they have been asked to accomplish.  All-Around Leaders respect and value each TEAM member as individuals though the relationship they built with them, and as a result, their people want to follow them. Encouragement for and recognition of the team reminds them all that you believe in their abilities. When you see the best in someone, they will want to rise to the expectations set of them - not out of obligation, but out of motivation and excitement.

3. Build up each TEAM member as an individual.  As leaders, our ultimate goal is to help others develop as human beings. Developing means the qualities an individual achieves will benefit them in numerous areas of life, not just their current position or role within the TEAM. Their growth will ultimately prepare them for future leadership positions.

4. Place people within their strengths. Discovering the right person for the right situation can be difficult; but taking the time to get the right people in the right places results in greater success.  To do this you need to have a relationship with them to determine their strengths.

 

5. Model the behavior your desire. What kind of TEAM members do you want? Leaders show the TEAM what to do by setting the example. If you desire a culture of excellence, model excellence; if you don't like what your TEAM members are doing, first take a look at yourself and then take action.

 

6. Convey the Dream. While you may not be conveying your own dream, you are certainly the interpreter. Be sure that you are clear about the dream. In doing so, you'll create clarity for the TEAM.

 

7. Reward the results. Giving praise for things you'd like to see again will guarantee that TEAM members continue to strive for success. And remember, rewards may differ for each TEAM member...you find out what motivates each member by being in relationship with them.

 

Overall, these principles will help an All-Around Leader in leading those they direct and more importantly that they develop. Are you an All-Around Leader? Are you aware of those in your organization that are?

Read More Featured Stories From July 2013 Wingin' It.