Home > Leadership, The Monday Musings Column > on making an impact

on making an impact

Even those without too much ego tend to want to be well thought of and for anyone scrambling up the greasy pole of promotion it is an important factor. Sure you don’t want to be everyone’s pal because you have to make the tough calls, right?But what impact are you making with your style of leadership?

Even those who see being hard-nosed in their dealings with people , well almost all of them, realise that keeping people onside is important because leaders need followers.It is all very well to say that your team are employees who will do what they are told, but you don’t get great results that way so playing the despot is not the best path and all such folks come unstuck in the end.

Calling in at one of my business neighbours the other day I found everyone in celebratory mood and wondered what the good news was. Maybe they had just smashed a target or something I thought, but no, the news was that a much despised member of senior management was moving on had been announced and they were all delighted.

Over the years I have been in many of these “the King is dead; long live the King!” moments and you need to be careful what you wish for. New brooms like to sweep clean and the incoming replacement here at my neighbours might just turn out to be worse that their predecessor; out of the frying pan and into the fire. Hopefully my friends will be happy with their new incumbent though and I wish them well.

How people react yo you, the impact that you have on them, is a fundamental part of leadership. It isn’t just the direct impact either, for what you do ripples on as your people go home to their families. Put them in a good mood and they go home happy; hack them off and they don’t and they may well pass on the misery to anyone thier paths cross with on the way. But they will also not give their best for you and what they do give will be grudging whereas if you treat them well they will try and, if you are really good, they will give you all that you ask and more.

Making the good things happen is not that easy and making bad things happen is a piece of cake, but to be in a sitiation where people are dancing on their desks at the news of your departure is bad.

I have met the persn concerned here and, from what I have seen, I would have happily had them on any of my teams over the years for they have obvious talent, even if their people skills are lacking bccause that is something that can be developed. I would have liked to have had the chance at any rate. Could I have had a positive impact on them? I’ll never know, but I hope that the impact that they have in their new role is a lot more positive. If it isn’t then it will be a waste.

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