Tuesday, March 22, 2011

eLearning CE: Activity 3 - Shamus Seng (17)

Traits that superior leaders possess :

Mission: Leaders know what their mission is. They know why the
organization exists. A superior leader has a well thought out (often
written) mission describing the purpose of the organization. That
purpose need not be esoteric or abstract, but rather descriptive,
clear and understandable. Every employee should be able to identify
with the mission and strive to achieve it.

Vision: Where do you want your organization to go? A vision needs to
be abstract enough to encourage people to imagine it but concrete
enough for followers to see it, understand it and be willing to climb
onboard to fulfill it.

Goal: How is the organization going to achieve its mission and vision
and how will you measure your progress? Like a vision, goals need to
be operational; that is specific and measurable. If your output and
results can't be readily measured, then it will be difficult to know
if you have achieved your purpose. You may have wasted important
resources (time, money, people, and equipment) pursuing a strategy or
plan without knowing if it truly succeeded.

Competency: You must be seen by your advisors, stakeholders,
employees, and the public as being an expert in your field or an
expert in leadership. Unless your constituents see you as highly
credentialed--either by academic degree or with specialized
experience--and capable of leading your company to success, it will be
more difficult for you to be as respected, admired, or followed.
Practically speaking, not all executives immediately possess all of
the characteristics that spell success. Many leaders learn along the
way with hard work. As crises and challenges arise, those at the top
of the hierarchy have key opportunities to demonstrate to others that
they are in fact, qualified to be leaders. In actuality, greater
competency can be achieved as a leader gains more on-the-job

A strong team: Realistically, few executives possess all of the skills
and abilities necessary to demonstrate total mastery of every
requisite area within the organization. To complement the areas of
weakness, a wise leader assembles effective teams of experienced,
credentialed, and capable individuals who can supplement any voids in
the leader's skill set. This ability is what sets leaders apart from
others. However, the leader needs to be willing to admit he lacks
certain abilities and go about finding trusted colleagues to
complement those deficiencies. After building the team, the
entrepreneur needs to trust that team to understand issues, create
solutions, and to act on them.

Communication skills: It does little good to have a strong mission,
vision, and goals--and even a solid budget--if the executive cannot
easily and effectively convey his ideas to the stakeholders inside and
outside of the organization. He must regularly be in touch with key
individuals, by email, v-mail, meetings, or other forms of
correspondence. Of course, the best way to ensure other people receive
and understand the message is with face-to-face interactions.

out of the office or touring different sites is an irreplaceable
method of building rapport and sending and receiving messages.
"Management By Walking Around," or MBWA, meeting employees at their
workstations or conference rooms, or joining them for lunch are just a
few of the many effective approaches leaders can use to develop
positive contacts with employees.

Interpersonal skills: Successful entrepreneurs are comfortable
relating to other people; they easily create rapport and are at least
more extroverted than they are introverted. These factors help leaders
seem approachable, likeable, and comfortable in their position. Those
qualities contribute to staff wanting to interact with their leader.
They also help motivate employees to do a better job. When workers can
relate to their boss, they believe that their boss is more concerned
about them, with their performance, and with their output.
Furthermore, they believe that they can go to their boss with problems
they encounter on the job without fearing consequences for not knowing
how to resolve issues.

Not all entrepreneurs are adept at
interpersonal skills. Those that aren't, might find it helpful to take
a course, choose a mentor or locate a therapist to help them build
interpersonal skills. The intangible cost is too high to not improve
these abilities. In addition, here's where a strong team comes into
play. The less experienced leader who is still learning these skills
can rely on the team to get out and to "press the flesh," interact
with employees, and spread a positive attitude to help develop morale.

A "can do, get it done" attitude: Nothing builds a picture of success
more than achievement, and achievement is the number one factor that
motivates just about everyone across all cultures. When employees see
that their boss can lead and direct, has a clear vision and attainable
goals, and actually gains results in a timely manner, then that
person's credibility increases throughout the organization.
Entrepreneurs must modestly demonstrate their skills to give their
constituents valid reasons to appreciate and value their efforts.

Inspiration: Quite often, employees need someone to look up to for
direction, guidance, and motivation. The entrepreneur needs to be that
person. Hopefully, Human Resources has hired self-motivated
individuals. Nevertheless, there are times, when many employees need
the boss to inspire them by word or action. Employees need someone to
look up to, admire, and follow. Even when the production or delivery
of services looks like "it is all going well," the leader may at times
need to step in personally to offer a suggestion or encouragement to
ensure that employees perform their jobs in an optimal manner.

Ambition: Resting on your laurels is bad for employee morale and
entrepreneurial credibility. Employees need to be constantly striving
for improvement and success; and they need to see the same and more in
their leaders. When the boss is seen as someone who works to attain
increasingly higher goals, employees will be impressed and more
willing to mirror that behavior. It's a win-win for everyone.

How a good leader manages crisis under stressful conditions :

A good leader preservers under stressful conditions and be resilient
when crisis strikes, and will never procrastinate. Leaders must have a
strong sense of courage and determination to complete the task even
though "a 100kg weight is on their shoulders".

Sources :



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