In February’s edition of Business Brief, I began a new series of leadership insights by focusing on the “human factors”, and how they contribute to our success.
‘Drive your people’, ‘dominate everyone’, ‘win at all costs’: these and similar phrases characterise much of what constituted leadership ‘wisdom’ throughout the 1980s and 1990s.
Back then, people became little more than a means to a usually financial end, whether employees or customers. Whilst we still live with the legacy of some of this thinking, thankfully leadership is increasingly understood as a much more nuanced talent.
Success requires a sophisticated approach
The ability to rapidly draw on a multitude of strengths to tackle particular scenarios, to recognise individual and team talent and motivate accordingly, and to serve (rather than starve) customers, requires a sophisticated approach.
Today’s exceptional leaders recognise that it is the human factors that contribute significantly to success. Examples of what great leaders do include
Building brilliant teams,
Harnessing the unique talents of the people they serve
Being keenly sensitive to the mood and tone within their organisations
Being open to criticism
Valuing their employees for the creative people that they are (rather than mere cogs in a machine)
Having a keen desire to enhance other people’s lives.
As golfer Paul McGinley rightly says in his interview, successful leaders don’t ‘over-captain’ their teams, preferring instead to understand and develop the unique talent that each person brings to the overall benefit of the company.
What is an emotionally intelligent leader?
In our work with leadership teams across the Channel Islands, those high in self-awareness and people skills achieve phenomenal outcomes. Emotionally intelligent leaders share the following:
As has been the case for centuries, but is sometimes forgotten, it is the human factors that make for leadership success. As we start a new year, it’s a good time to ask: what will help you to increase your own people skills?
Give us a call to find out more about how you can bring back the human factor and keep an eye out for similar upcoming articles from us in Business Brief throughout the year.