Many people seem to think that great leaders are just born that way. But I can tell you I’ve seen personal transformation firsthand in people who were definitely NOT natural-born leaders. They had to work hard at it and keep working hard to improve. Like fitness or happiness, you don’t just arrive at the “great leader” signpost; you commit to keep going and growing.
Importance of Better Leadership
Companies run better on EOS®, but without great leaders, those organizations will only scratch the surface of what’s possible. To get the full effect of Running on EOS™, businesses need to master Leadership, Management, and Accountability (LMA™).
The personal development of each leader drives transformation throughout the business. Because when a leader understands what it takes to be a great boss and the psychology behind it, everything changes.
Learn to Present a United Front
Great leaders get comfortable with conflict. They openly debate issues during their leadership team meetings. Regardless of whether or not they get their way when the door opens, they’re 100% on the same page. Out in the office or on the shop floor, they present a united front.
This can be a tough one, especially if a leader really doesn’t agree with a decision. If they go back to their groups, roll their eyes, and say: “This is what the boss wants,” it sends mixed signals.
This is one of those insidious things that people don’t realize creates so much misunderstanding. It muddles the message their people hear (i.e., what a decision really means for them). Instead, leaders need to own the decision, not blame someone else.
A great leader says: “This is what WE want as a leadership team. This is OUR vision.”
Put Team One First
In EOS, we teach that the leadership team should always be their “first team” (aka Team One) in a company. Every member of the leadership team must consider the greater good of the organization before their own functional team.
I think a lot of leaders and managers try to buddy up with their own teams to build camaraderie. Instead, this creates silos and an “us vs. them” mentality. When leaders mama-bear (or papa-bear) their teams, they put their functional team ahead of Team One.
In the long run, this kind of practice is toxic for the leadership team and for the company’s culture.
So leaders grow by learning this behavior isn’t helpful and taking ownership of their part in the decision.
When everyone rows in the same direction, everyone does better.
Sharing Transformation Stories
I find identifying these seemingly insignificant behaviors so important. I bring them up during Focus Day with new clients. And I’ll keep raising them anytime I see an opportunity to shed light on these behaviors and unwind old habits. Then, to really champion these little habits, I share examples of leaders who learned to do better.
In nearly every session where I share examples of bad habits, at least one leader looks at me sheepishly. Up to this point, they may not even realize their behavior was poisoning the well.
Changing these habits takes work. Leaders must be 100% committed to transforming how they behave with their teams.
But once they start their transformations into stronger leaders, they also model stronger leadership behaviors for the lower layers of the organization. Then, once they’ve really committed to personal transformation, the leadership team can unlock the full power of Running on EOS.