In order to learn leadership, there are three things we need. We need a coach to show us how to improve, a process to follow, and some data to know if we are making progress. The trouble is that in the process of learning to be leaders we rarely get all of these.
Think about learning to play hockey.
- You get a coach (have you ever heard of a hockey team without a coach).
- You get process (where to position yourself, how to move, what to do in each situation.)
- And you get some data (minutes played,plus/minus, shots,penalties, goals.)
Now think about business and the process of leadership and we’re lucky to get any of these.
- Two thirds of bosses are lousy so you won’t get much coaching there.
- You get very little in terms of personal processes such as how to communicate, motivate, delegate, set a vision etc.
- And you don’t get metrics to be able to judge how you’re doing as a leader.
Fundamentally we need to reinvent how we learn leadership to ensure that we get good coaching, useful process and relevant metrics.
Bill Gates said it perfectly with regard to teachers in this recent TED Talk.
Thank you for this post, Charles.
I always knew, that Bill Gates was a true visionary. This video proved it one more time: “We all need people who gives us feedback, that’s how we improve”. And you are right, it can be perfectly applied not just to improving teacher’s performance, but also to improving leadership skills, management and accordingly employees performance.
This approach should be used in every business, every company. Every “boss” or a manager should be able to hear his employees( team members) feedback, opinions and suggestions, and based on it find solutions to improve.This approach definitely will increase the level of engagement.
I should mention about Greengage Mobile,Toronto based company. Their web platform and mobile app help companies to reach their goals by getting their employees involved:”Get instant feedback from your employees on company initiatives and new ideas. Give your employees a voice, and a vehicle to communicate”. @GreengageMobile; http://www.greengagemobile.com.
They are able to actually quantify(measure)employees engagement and also have the ways to incourage it(compensate for it).
Thanks for the heads up about Greengage Mobile. very interesting approach to the issue.