Last week, Leadership Excellence: The Ultimate Strategy for Success, featured an interesting and informative article titled Creating a Culture of Excellence. The article was written by Jason Daley and was published in the March 2010 issue of Entrepreneur Magazine.
As I stated last week, “If you are a leader who truly wants to improve and hone your leadership skills, I recommend reading this article. You cannot help but find at least a few good ideas to evaluate and possibly implement.”
A side bar to the Entrepreneur article is also worth thought and action. The side bar article, entitled Three Steps To Take Now, is based on the soon-to-be published book, Beyond the Wall of Resistance: Why 70% of All Changes Fail – and What to Do About It. The author, Rick Maurer, offers advice on engaging your employees in the pursuit of excellence:
- Some people will always be suspicious of change. Ignore them. If you put your attention on converting the 5 percent who aren’t going along, you’re missing opportunities with the other 95 percent.
- Employees need the same fire in their bellies as their leader when it comes to change. Hold meetings on implementing your plans and really let employees engage in the discussion. They need to walk out saying, “I contributed something.”
- Give employees room to create change. They’re often busy enough; when extra assignments add stress, they’re more likely to fail. An employer needs to ask, “What support do you need to make this project happen? What can we take off your plate to help? What money or access do you need?” The leader needs the guts to say, “Spend 70 percent of your time on this project and let other things slide.” Otherwise, change projects don’t get done.
Another way of stating the three points above is:
- Focus on, and support those employees and colleagues who are making desired changes happen. Others will either follow or go away… either way is fine. Get on board or get out of the way.
- Truly engage employees. Allow and encourage all employees, including those on the front lines, to lead and make desired change happen. Everyone is a leader. Allow them to lead.
- If desired change is truly important, realign expectations and priorities in order to make the change happen and stick. Don’t just pile on desired change and expect it to happen… it won’t.
Excellent food for thought and action, in my opinion. Go for it… Create a Culture of Excellence!