Inspiring leaders


Being out of topics, to write on, I visited HBR blogs site to get ideas, and found an interesting blog on leadership qualities, which mentioned being inspirational to the team as one of the 3 main qualities. The blog described inspirational leaders as

They set stretch goals with their team. They spent time developing their subordinates. They engaged in highly collaborative behavior. They encouraged those about them to be more innovative.

Other things we identified were somewhat less specific and less tangible. These inspirational leaders were more adept at making emotional connections with their subordinates, for instance. They were better at establishing a clear vision. They were more effective in their communication and willing to spend more time communicating. They were ardent champions of change. They were perceived as effective role models within the organization.

Now I can’t change bosses-for good or bad. I can’t change peers also. But I can try to be inspirational to 4-5 team members who are reporting to me. So I tried to assess myself on these points.

I do set goals with the team, but tricky people here are likes of tech guru. Whatever goal or timeline you give him, he works at his own pace. I have reminded him thousand times. He says sorry, I will take care in future, but forgets again. One other thing I noticed is that when my boss or the top boss give some work directly to him, he does it jumping and running. I don’t know if there is some weakness in me, or it is a problem in him. I can’t tell him directly that why don’t you do my work, and start jumping when other seniors give you work. Most likely he will go to those seniors and bitch about me. So till  I find a solution, I will keep reminding. Other optionj is doing the job yourself, but then that is not management, right.

As for developing subordinates, I have started sharing my feedback with them on a regular basis-positive as well as negative. But I have been told my style was rough and some juniors did not like it. So I am working on polishing my feedback style, and feedback continues.

Collaborative behaviour is too big a term for me. I give them freedom to get noticed in front of seniors, and of course seniors also encourage these youngsters. Though some juniors take it as if they have stopped reporting to me and are directly reporting to the senior. I let the juniors err and learn on their own, and don’t jump in at the slightest hint of a problem. Hope that counts as collaborative behaviour. Though one junior told me that at times I don’t help even when asked for, so I am doubly cautious on this issue now.

I do encourage team to be more innovative and find out newer and smarter ways of doing things. So I will give full marks to myself here.

Emotional connections, hmm. I thought of myself good at that and some juniors also thought that. But I have seen some juniors like tech guru taking advantage of this familiarity and ignoring or neglecting my instructions.  Then there have been some juniors who did not like my snapping on some occasions. So I need to learn grace under pressure. And my present boss has written needs training on inter-personal skills in my assessment. So I am not pretty sure on this point now.

Vision, I do whatever best is required at my level, at least I think so. Ditto for communication and change champions.

So enough self-praise for today. Rest some other day.



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