A few years of bad decisions and dealing with toxic employees can sap a leader’s mojo and self-confidence.
Centerbrook, CT (PRWEB) June 05, 2013
Strategies, a leading national business management training and coaching company, has just posted a new article on their web site titled, “What It Really Takes to Be the Best.”
“Growing a great company has nothing to do with luck,” say Strategies Founder & CEO, Neil Ducoff. “It has to do with leadership’s ability to surround themselves with the best players; to innovate, execute, and make good decisions; and to manage cash while capitalizing on opportunities. Throw in a healthy dose of accountability and being the best just may be within reach. And if when the company does become the best, leadership will quickly discover that it takes just as much hard work to stay at the top of the game as it did to get there in the first place.”
Ducoff continues, “Every company starts out wanting to be the best, but things happen along the way that keep pushing that coveted title further and further beyond your reach. A few years of bad decisions, cash-flow challenges, and dealing with toxic employees can sap a leader’s mojo and self-confidence. When a company’s thinking and behavior is stuck on average – i.e. not actively pursuing the extraordinary – the outcome, as expected, will continue to be average.”
Here are six strategies on what it really takes to be the best:
STOP TALKING ABOUT IT: When all employees hear is, “We’re going to be the best,” followed by little or no action, they stop listening. More importantly, they stop believing. Being on the pursuit to be the best is an exciting journey full of hazards, amazing discoveries, and rewards. But the voyage doesn’t truly begin until the train leaves the station. Leaders can take their companies, people, and customers to extraordinary destinations. To do so, they need to stop talking about it and kick it into fast-forward.
TAKE RESPONSIBILITY: Leaders need to understand that it’s not their people that are holding them back – it’s themselves. Leaders are notorious for pointing the big finger of blame at their employees. Who hired, trained, coached, evaluated, and inspired them? Who isn’t playing by the same rules employees must follow? Who is so busy working on other stuff that employees aren’t getting the attention they need? Being the best means that leadership must bring their best game to work every day.
HAVE A VISION AND KEEP THE DRUMBEAT: Leadership’s vision of what being the best looks like must be presented in extreme clarity to each and every employee. Everyone must know what your standard of the best looks like, what their roles are, how it’s measured, and how the culture will change. Then, relentless communication must kick in to maintain momentum and focus. If leadership makes that big announcement and then fails to follow it up with relentless long-term communication, the train will sputter and stall within sight of the station.
THE TOUGH STUFF: For leaders, there’s a price to pay in being the best. It means working through those unpleasant leadership blockages that hold them and your company back. If leaders don’t like making unpopular decisions, dealing with difficult employees, or following a budget, average will always be their best. If they are micromanagers, average will be their best. If they are all about the numbers rather than the people, average will be their best. And if they don’t trust anyone, no one will trust them…and average will be their best.
A HIGHER STANDARD: To be the best, leadership must set their company’s success bar high enough to make it stretch, feel the burn, and grow. Holding everyone to a higher standard of thinking and behavior is non-negotiable. Commitment and passion are infectious. Leaders will know they are on the right track when vendors, customers, and business associates take notice. Excellence always stands out in a sea of average.
YES, IT’S A CULTURE SHIFT: Change initiatives that elevate an entire company always involve a culture shift. Culture is the collective thinking and behavior of a company. A company simply cannot achieve next-level success without going through a culture shift. Leading a company successfully through a culture shift is the hallmark of a No-Compromise Leader.
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Neil Ducoff is the Founder and CEO of Strategies, a business management coaching, consulting and training firm. He is also is the author of the award-winning "No-Compromise Leadership" leadership book, as well as "Wake Up!" and the recently published second edition of "Fast Forward". To learn more at http://www.strategies.com/business.