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How To Be An Effective Leader In The Workplace - Part Two - Articles Surfing
This article is the second of a series on what true leadership is at the core, and will focus on effective leadership in the workplace.
It becomes obvious to me, while working in the ad business, how important it was to the individual to constantly want to receive credits. It is healthy and justified if you feel good about your accomplishments. However, if you are a leader, that constant need for gratification underscores a low sense of self-esteem and insecurities.
Abraham Lincoln said, "It's surprising how much you can accomplish if you don't care who gets the credit". How often have you come across juniors coming to you glorifying their achievements and like a little puppy, await for that celebration of praises.
Well they are juniors and they are young and lacking in wisdom. Leaders are supposed to be made of greater element. I have however observed a fair number of group leaders in the few places that I worked in, behaving just like that.
They were smart and highly trained in their jobs. And yet sometimes even senior people lack the wisdom to step outside themselves and not behave like the juniors. There were many times in group head meetings,headed by the CEO, where the group leaders would spring into action. It was a non-spoken corporate culture that if you had nothing to say, then surely you had nothing to show for. There was a particular woman who would always have something to say, which always would point to her "achievements". She would talk and talk.
If an idea is sought for on how to do things better, she would be the first to speak, usually giving herself as the good prime example of how well her team was run and therefore the answer to the question would be to emulate her style. She hungered for the credits. It was quite amazing how nobody told her she was quite the laughing stock amongst her peers who talked about it openly to her juniors.
The effect of that is her group eventually broke up, because no one respected her. Some left and few asked to be transferred out. It was always about her and her position in the agency. She demanded respect and credits, even if it was her juniors' achievements. A good leader would accord credits to her team even if it was hers alone. The success of her team is her success. That is what she failed to see. Let's not get hung up on getting praised. It's a reflection of how little you feel inside.
People are generally okay, it's only their behavior that's a problem.
Ken Blanchard, author of "One Minute Manager" made a profound statement," If God wanted us to talk more than listen, He would have given us two mouths rather than two years".
As a leader or would-be leader, it would serve you well to be mindful that there is no such thing as personal achievement when you have a team of people who help you achieve it. Step outside yourself constantly and check in the mirrors regularly. It takes more than just a sharp mind or skill to become an effective leader in a workplace. Your job is to listen more than to talk because only then you can give better advice and solution.
Copyright © 1995 - Photius Coutsoukis (All Rights Reserved).
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