Friday, 29 March 2019

Leading through developing others (Why do we need to develop others?)

In an organizational environment, one of the primary responsibility of a leader is to develop his team members to the next level of competency. The necessity can be looked at both a leader and a team member's perspective.

From a leader's growth perspective:

Assume that you are not developing your team to your competency level, then you are forced to do the routine things you are doing and you will not have time to develop yourself for new learnings. Your growth stagnates there

When you are not preparing the teammates as the successor for your job, while management considers you for elevation or different growth opportunities, they think twice about existing positions as there is no right successor. Management may want to keep you in the same position until they find an alternative. You are losing new opportunities.

From the team members perspective :

 In today’s scenario of learning and opportunities, real talent will find its way for their growth. If you are not taking care of your people development and growth, eventually your smart team member finds his own way to grow either in your existing organization or in the new organization.

Generally, people regard you as a leader only when you help them out to bring out their potential.

You will grow only by helping others to grow.

Hence, in all dimensions, as a leader of your team, you should develop your team.

However, there are some misconceptions and barriers to developing others and let us discuss next week.

Have a great week ahead!

Leading through developing others

Having discussed the three phases of leadership development viz, Leading self, Leading others, Leading through  Result, the final and 4th phase of the leadership development process is “ Developing others.”

What is meant by developing others?  

In a professional setup, developing others means your intention to spend your time and energy to develop others in terms of professional competency enhancement.

The efforts could be on any or all of the following areas.

1.Imparting the knowledge or sharing your experience with your team or next generation
2.Facilitate for skill development or applying the knowledge by your teammate
3.Giving your feedback or coach others to inculcate the right behaviors for growth
4.Being available for mentoring or guiding others by offering your perspectives

Since as a leader, you have grown up in a career ladder through your competency, now it is your turn to lift others to your level of competency. That is the development of others.
As I have observed in most of the organization, people are inclined enough in developing themselves, delivering results as part of leadership development, but not giving equal importance on developing others except a few people who have a genuine interest on others. This scenario is not by intentional, but due to lack of awareness and misconceptions of development.

In some organizations, there are systems and processes of developing others as a necessary process, and there is a governance mechanism to ensure people are spending time on developing others. However, developing others must come within as part of giving to others, and it is a moral responsibility of everyone who has grown up on the professional ladder.

Let us discuss the following aspects  of developing others in the coming week
  1. Why do we need to develop others?
  2. Misconceptions in developing others
  3. Methods of developing others
  4. Insights on giving feedback
  5. When is coaching required?
  6. Need for being a mentor to others
Have a great week till then!

Sunday, 17 March 2019

Leading through Result ( Focus on the process)

As discussed, one of the development steps in leadership development is delivering consistent results. The dilemma most of us have is whether to chase the result or the process. To get clarity, we need to understand the law of nature.

"For any effect/result, there must be a cause/process ;
When there is a change in process, accordingly there will be a change in result".

For example, if you want to make the best presentation to your client( Result), many factors contribute to the result. Your presentation content, your body language, your voice quality, the environment in which you present, your client’s interest and so on. When all the process is good, the result also will be good. You may not have control over the result, but you can influence or ensure the process in all factors as much as possible.

When you focus on the process and drive the process, the result may be in your favor
Highly effective leaders, always focus on minute things and ensure the factors are always in their favor and eventually they achieve the result they want.

You might have seen some people exist successfully many years in their chosen field like media, sports, business amidst all the competition and turbulence times. You can see a typical pattern in their thought process, that is, continuously develop themselves as a process. When they are changing themselves as a process, the result is also sustainable.

    To sum up, if you want a great result, your process also needs to be different and robust. You can not influence the result, but you can influence the process. More your process is consistent the result also will be consistent and higher level.

Leadership is all about delivering result through the process, not through ad-hoc, shortcut, one-time success !.

Leading through Result- (Managing Expectation)

One of the areas, a leader, need to sensitize is on understanding or managing the expectation clearly from others in a professional environment. When the expectation on the result is not clearly understood and clarified, it leads to disconnect and frustration on both giver and receiver.

In one of my client operations, the business head asked his accountant to help him with P&L analysis of the previous year. The accountant worked through the accountancy software and prepared P&L statement data. With a sigh of relief as he delivered the work on time, he explained the business head the hardship he had undergone to make the report. However, the business head was not happy with the output.

What the business head expected from his teammate was that statement with analysis on what needs to be done to improve the P&L as he thought that information was already available in the software system. His expectation was to get “sensitivity analysis”, whereas the accountant felt that taking summary from the system itself was a significant task and he delivered the result on time.

Here is the issue is lack of expectation management.

We may suggest that communication needs to be improved on both ends. In reality, there is an emerging trend in the professional transaction is to give more value added than stated expectation given the technology, information available in the professional environment. The transaction could be between peers, customer and supplier, employee and employer.

Discounting the fact of communication improvement, the question an individual must ask himself is whether he is making an effort to offer an extra bit of value addition. That will be the starting for leadership development towards making an impact on others!!