Friday, March 28, 2014

High Achievement Companies Focus on the Invisible

Having worked with approximately 100 leadership teams over a 30 year period one of the most significant items I have concluded is that High Achievement Leadership Teams and cultures do not follow the tide or trends that are often spoken about or are present in the majority of companies.  While most companies focus on what can be seen physically, High Achievement Companies focus on building what can NOT be seen.  It sounds strange but the real power that drives high achievement is what is invisible but so clearly felt.  So what are these invisible factors that drive high achievement?  To date I have identified five factors.  In this version of “The Strategic Minute” I will share the first invisible factor common to all High Achievement Companies and that is the personal characteristics of the leadership team members.   High Achievement Companies tend to have leadership team members that:  
• Have a strong sense of self and do NOT react hastily to negative comments or posts.  They tend to be very grounded and operating from a higher plateau.   
• Tend to give away all credit when things are going well and take the blame when things do not work out. They tend NOT to seek public recognition for accomplishments.
• Possess a conversation style that is inquiring.  They pay attention to other people rather than talk about themselves, their accomplishments, or their world.
• Treat everyone with dignity.  I mean everyone; Servers at restaurants, clients, cashiers, team members and CEOs are all treated with an equivalent amount of respect and dignity.  Although they operate from a position of dignity, they are not pushovers or shy about communicating messages that are difficult to hear or to correct someone’s behavior when a standard has not been met.
• Are ever evolving in the sense that they are continuously improving.
• Choose to give each activity and conversation their best. They do not take short cuts or rush from one activity to another activity.  They focus on what they are engaged in at that moment.  
• Have a tendency to be disciplined both at work and in their personal lives. Their personal lives reflect their invisible leadership with strong families, a strong spiritual element, good physical health and fitness.
• Live beyond themselves by recognizing they need to be a good role model.  They know that their actions and lives speak volumes and that they are on stage at all times.  They know that actions, NOT words, set the operating standard so they live by all the rules, guidelines, core values, and guiding principles to the highest level.
• Invest in and develop others inside of work and often times outside of work too.
• Think about, monitor and invest in the company’s culture.

What strikes me about these individuals is how counter-cultural they are.  How many of these characteristics do you see in your team?  Consider how you can build them into your leaders.

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Kathie McBroom
Synergy Business Group LLC

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