I spend an inordinate amount of time thinking about leadership. I read about it, watch others practice it, and sadly see many struggle with it (including me.) Once in a while however, a leader moves from the pack of nameless faces and rises above the masses.
It is rare...
...and for that brave soul, it can be a very lonely place.
Think about the leaders in your organization. Many are mired in an endless task list, administrative duties that have nothing to do with either the company's values or strategic plans, or have very little time to actually support the talent on their teams.
Talent, after all, is the only thing that matters in today's world. No talent...no culture...no execution...no profit. Nothing.
So which leader in your world has moved out of "the way things are done here" and has taken a bold step forward? I'm not talking about the ones who say they're bold...I want you to identify a leader who has taken action that demonstrates the courage to truly be bold.
Do you still have anyone on your list?
Bold Can Be Hell
I think we can all recognize when "things need to change" in our organizations, right? The metrics are bad, decisions are not being made in a timely manner (or at all), and important deadlines are missed.
Someone needs to take action. But...
"My calendar is really tight this week, so I'll get that on my To-Do list and convene a task force at some point to fully examine all of the issues involved, and make sure I don't step on any executive's over-inflated ego...I mean toes."
Bold leaders simply do not accept the same old duck and run approach that so many faux-leaders rely on to survive.
Bold leaders do something. They break through bottlenecks. They force their way through the blockers in the company. They execute plans in a way that others are simply afraid to do.
Yes, I said it. Many leaders are simply scared to lead. It is much easier to focus on one's survival than it is to put the organization ahead of yourself.
What are the consequences of taking real action? Criticism. Colleagues turning on you. A scramble to justify their own ineffectiveness.
Candidly, the bold ones are put through hell. That is until the results prove the bold leader was correct all along...and then they are suddenly considered a genius.
There is a reason no one ever talks about bold teams. It's only the individual that gets the coveted label of being bold.
How About You
Who are the bold leaders in your organization? Have you fired up the blow torch and joined the dinosaur naysayers on the attack; or, are you willing to walk with the brave ones and provide the support they deserve?
I'd love to hear from you.