A Leaders Guide for Thriving in Today’s Challenging Times

Today’s leaders are faced with business challenges as tough as any over the past 35 plus years. In order to provide the needed leadership for their organization’s success leaders today need to demonstrate some very fundamental leadership skills and behaviors.

” alt=”” width=”186″ height=”120″ />To date, we have reviewed seven fundamentals:

1 – Work Hard (and Smart) and Perform?
2 – Radiate Confidence and Optimism?
3 – Enlist and Enroll vs. Command and Control?
4 – Drive Change and Innovation
5 – Foster Cooperation and Collaboration
6 – Sharpen the Saw – Your Saw
7 – Communicate and Communicate Some More

In this e-newsletter, the Harvesters present the 8th fundamental behavior that “Growing Forward Leaders” must model for their team during challenging times.

Remember you Leaders out there: “It all starts and ends with you, the leader.”

Our next fundamental focuses on Thinking, Planning and Execution and is called:
Reflect, Connect Decide and Do

Growing Forward Leaders need to make the time to:  Reflect and Think About It

    • Take a time out to: Reflect, Refresh, Reenergize, Renew, Rejoice and Retreat
    • Conduct company retreats preferably “off campus” that have a planning component
    • Remember that one minute of planning saves seven minutes of chaos: take the needed time to properly plan
    • Always beware of the Ready- Shoot -Aim process of planning, this is the classical “winging it” style of planning (guess who gets shot and where)

Ask yourself:
Where have we come from? Where are we at now? Where are we going?

Growing Forward Leaders should really help their organizations to:
Become a Learning Organization

  • Encourage Open Dialogue with the Spirit of Inquiry.  “Best in Class” organizations and leaders have a true open line of communication with their people; healthy spirited discussions are happening all of the time. People attack the situation or the topic and are brutally honest without being brutal or attacking the individual.
  • Connect the Dots. Think it all the way through; consider cause and affect and be systems thinkers. Make sure one decision doesn’t have an adverse affect on another part of the organization. Try using process maps to see each step that is needed to reach the desired destiny.
  • Consider your Vision, Mission and Core Values of the Organization. Before you rush off and implement new systems or processes be sure to consider how it relates to your Vision, Mission and Core Values. Remember these serve as your company’s moral and philosophical “compass” to help keep you pointed towards the right heading.
  • Before making a BIG Decision; Sleep on It. Don’t get caught up on being overly decisive especially with big moves. Take some time to reflect on it before doing it. Sleep on it. It is amazing the perspective we get when we just sleep on it.

Ok now after you have reflected on it for a while it is now time to:
Decide and Do

  • Decide as a Democracy and Execute like a Dictatorship. Stronger decisions, commitment and alignment occur through healthy consensus building. After you have gained the consensus on what to do next it is now time to execute. Execution often takes on the appearance of a dictatorship. Guess what? While you may need to stop and evaluate and adjust course, once we have decided to go forth we need to GO FORTH
  • Beware of the “Road to Abilene” This is what happens when people are asked for their input and they just ”go along” with the overall crowd’s feelings and tendencies. After the decision is reached often people complain about the decision that was made. When asked where were they during the decision they say “I was just going along with the crowd and didn’t want to rock the boat” or they took the “Road to Abilene” Make sure everyone has a true opportunity to fully express their ideas and offer their input. Growing Forward Leaders allow for and get their people to give input and do not allow their team just to take the “Road to Abilene”
  • Don’t wait to have it Perfect before Launching. No new idea or program will be perfect when it first gets started. Get it up to around 80% then do it and then adjust accordingly

Remember Growing Forward Leaders:                                                                    

No Action is Taking an Action, Nothing, and Nothing Won’t Get Us Anywhere

Simply put this fundamental: Reflect, Connect, Decide & Do can be summarized as:

Allow time to Reflect, Plan and Think things through

                            Connect this with other parts of the organization and systems

                                                 Decide on a course of action

Then Do It

Adjust as needed and then repeat

Suggested reading: The Abilene Paradox

If you would like to learn more about becoming a Growing Forward Leader please contact us.

Bill Arman

worked for and helped grow one of the biggest landscape outfits in the country. He’s seen how the big boys do it, how their systems and structures work. So his know-how is rooted in recruiting, hiring, training and growing great people—that along with quality assurance. Bill, alone, has gone on 15,000 quality site visits in his career. Nobody else has that, not that we know of anyway. He received Lawn and Landscape/ Bayer Environmental Science's 2006 Leadership Award. Read Bill's full bio.

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