You read the books, you listen to the podcasts, and you follow all your favorite leaders in the media but yet you still have questions about effective leadership. I’ve done the same. Over many years. Yet now I feel I can share what I’ve learned that has not only helped me become an effective leader, but it’s also helped me identify and nurture my company leaders. In my opinion, it’s the key to my success and can be yours as well. But it’s not for the faint of heart. There is commitment and work involved so if you are willing, read on to learn about my “Top 7 Truisms of Effective Leaders":
#1 – Know that Respect is Earned – this goes back to my statement about commitment and work. It takes time to develop the skills to become a good leader. And the skills you develop need to become habit so as time goes on, you are earning respect as a great leader;
#2 – Make Deliberate Efforts – as physicians, it is sometimes hard to take off our “technician” hat to focus on becoming a great leader. But you need to deliberately become more interested in what and who is around you and not just the next case;
#3 - Your Foundation is Integrity – honest communication is a must and it has to start from the top. Your job as the leader is to communicate with staff honestly. Share your vision. Let them know how you make money so they know how they can contribute. Share your expectations;
#4 – Make Connections – show genuine interest in the people you hire. Realize they have lives outside of the walls of your office. Ask questions that show you care about them personally as well as professionally. This will go a long way towards their loyalty to you;
#5 – Hold People Accountable in a Respectable Way – give the people you hire the tools to do their job, don’t micro-manage. Instead, get out of the way and if something goes sideways, have the conversation no matter how difficult but use these failures as teachable moments;
#6 – Understand the Importance of Team – always look for staff that gets the concept of team. Some of the best employees can be ones that played sports because they’ve experienced working as a team and may also be more “coachable”. The team mindset in business is an important one;
#7 – Adequately Plan Your Succession – develop your company leaders with the goal of walking out one day (lucratively) without a worry that your hard work and success will live on.
As an effective leader, you will make a big impact on your staff and on your bottom line. Make a list of people you know that are great leaders and people you’ve known not to be great leaders. Compare their attributes. See where you stand in comparison and identify what you may need to work on to confidently put yourself in the great leader column. I promise you will not be disappointed if you decide to work towards it!