Main Obstacles Leaders Must Overcome to be Effective and Successful

Main Obstacles Leaders Must Overcome to be Effective and Successful

By: Gary K. Pino, FMP As I am sure you are well aware, you probably recognize the name Dr. John C. Maxwell, Author, Speaker and Founder of The INJOY Group. If not, here’s a very succinct introduction of him:  “In 1985, Dr. John C. Maxwell founded The INJOY Group, with a mission to develop leaders of excellence and integrity.”   In other words, Dr. Maxwell is well-known as one of the “Fathers of Leadership”.  Although this blog is not directly about Dr. Maxwell, I wanted to use his introduction about a Management book I am currently reading, The Top Ten Mistakes Leaders Make by Hans Finzel (ISBN 1-56476-246-7), “This is one of the most practical books on leadership I have in my own personal library.  If you are serious about becoming a better leader, you will want to read this book.”   Others commented that if, “we avoid the ten ‘minefields’ outlined in Finzel’s book, we will become leaders of integrity and authenticity.”  (Crawford W. Loritts, Jr.) ~ and ~ “This is a great reminder to every leader of the most important mistakes to avoids.  It will be invaluable to those assuming new (leadership) responsibilities.”  (Paul Eshleman)  I chose to write this blog about leadership because this leadership focus is essential and critical to the success and succession of our Firm!  It’s also been a very hot topic around here at IDO Incorporated for some time now, and rightfully so.  In fact, various and numerous leadership type professional development opportunities have been and are continually being provided to our Associates.    Getting back to the matter at hand … we hear so much about all the “How to Books of becoming a better Leader or a better Manager” but we seldom see references being made to the “mistakes Leaders make”.   Since the subject of Leadership is very interesting to me, I’m going to make this a ten (10) part blog for the remainder of my monthly blog writings over the course of the year.   This will allow me to cover a solution to one of the top ten mistakes Leaders make, from one monthly blog to the next.  In Finzel’s opinion, the top of the top ten leadership sins is “Top-down autocratic arrogant leader”, which is grounded on a militaristic model of shouting commands to fragile subordinates.  A perfect example of this practice would be experienced by hearing a superior say, “I’m in charge here, and the faster you realize that the better off we’ll all be.”  ~ OR ~ “Do as I say, NOT as I do.” I’m sure you’ve also heard the phrase, “Knowledge is power”,  another perfect example of a Top-down autocratic leader who’s true intent is to simply put their ‘weaker underlings’ in their place and keep them there. Researchers have found that ineffective leaders follow this Top-down autocratic leadership attitude for five (5) reasons: 1.        “It’s traditional.” 2.        “It’s the most common.” 3.        “It’s the easiest to follow.” 4.        “It comes natural.” 5.        “It reflects the abuse of ‘man’.”  So, knowing that the Top-down autocratic leadership style is the number one mistake of a Leader, what style then opposes it?  Although there are a few similar opposing Top-down autocratic leadership style names such as Participatory Management, the Flat Organizational Style or Democratic Leadership Style, Finzel prefers the 21st Century label of “Servant Leader.”    Some clearly visible characteristics and qualities of a “Servant Leader” include but are certainly not limited to:  An individual who rolls up their sleeves and gets “down and dirty” with his/her teammates for the purpose of implementing, executing and delivering on what they all set out to do. In other words, it’s a harmoniously way of collectively performing all of their responsibilities and duties so as to mutually accomplish their firm’s objectives.  A “Servant Leader” must be open and willing to help others be the best they can be by effectively providing them with:
·          TIME                             ·          shared information ·          facts                         ·          energy ·          resources                      ·          the networks ·          guidance & direction    ·          mentoring ·          respect                        ·          trust ·          recognition & praise    ·          opportunities to learn new things ·          small, unexpected rewards for jobs well done ·          fun at work

Finzel visually sums up a Servant Leader as someone who “sits and weeps with those who weep within our organizations.”  Therefore, in order to lead with a Servant Leader attitude as opposed to a Top-down autocratic arrogant attitude, one must follow Finzel’s presentation findings: ·          Serve all and do not be abusive ·          Give people room and freedom to be themselves, without practicing deplorable delegation on them ·          Focus on the needs of others while making an extra effort to listen to them ·          Become “partners” in the process and don’t be a dictator ·          Let go with affirmation by not holding on to __fill in the blank____ ·          Be empowering to others and don’t be egocentric 

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