Chapter 1: The New Leader
As the traditional model of leadership changes, the biggest obstacle to leaders is not a lack of expertise, but rather a failure of relationship management. In the new world, talk is work, trust is a strategic asset, and relationships are the engines of success.
Are you in a new leadership role? Or are you a leader with ambitions to achieve even more? Either way, your challenge is to achieve your goals through others.
So, how are those people feeling? Do they know exactly what needs to be done? Do they know enough about what their colleagues are doing to be able to collaborate properly? Do they have the resources they need? Do they have the right incentives to motivate their behaviours, and the right sense of purpose and values to guide their actions? Do they feel valued and respected? Do they know how you would like your customers to feel after every interaction with them? Do they know why what they are doing really matters? Do they truly care?
If you can win the emotional commitment of the people who follow you and inspire them to achieve more than they thought possible, then you really will be a new leader. A new-age leader.
To be a great leader today you have to be a great communicator. This is because leadership is all about relationships and conversations. Relationships are all about trust, care, concern, understanding and constant communication. Whether those relationships are with people inside or outside the organization you lead, the same rules apply. Nothing is more valuable to leaders than the quality of their relationships. Those relationships can only thrive on constant and excellent communication.