Showing Leadership in Difficult Times Article 2
Now that the lockdown has been extended and it looks like we’re in this for the long haul, it’s even more critical that you express good leadership in the way that you interact with others and keep your staff motivated and on message.
The following notes are Adapted from ‘How to Lead Your Team and Keep the Right Balance’ published by Charles Barnascone of Infinite Possibilities Ltd
In the book How to Lead your Team, the action of setting the destination forms the foundation for all the other aspects of leadership within the Leadership Matrix, also referred to in his book. Charles sets out the first steps to make leadership work in difficult conditions:
Step 1 of the Leadership Matrix Setting the destination – Where are you heading?
In these difficult times it is really critical to keep sight of what’s important
When you set the destination for your team you form the context within which all the other sections of the Leadership Matrix will work. Setting the destination means setting your purpose and your values which will form the guidance system of how you will operate.
In these times it’s critical that you refer back to that destination which you set in the first place and keep your focus on that original context.
Without a clear idea of your purpose, and your values, decisions about your use of time become
more difficult. Without clarity of values, it becomes increasingly difficult to sustain results in the long term. Setting the direction then, forms the core of the Leadership Matrix, and so rightly sits within the inner centre circle of the Leadership Matrix.
So let’s look at a reminder of Concept 2 – Values – What’s important to you?
To lead in the way that you would like to, so that you can be a role model, you will need to be clear in your own mind what is important to you about how you lead.
Having clarity of your values, so that when you need to make an important decision about direction, you can do so based on a core foundation of what is important – what is ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ for you or your team.
Values are those things, which are most important to you. Throughout your life you will be motivated to meet your values, even though you may not be totally aware of what they are. The reason they are called values is because they are powerful motivators in the way you run your life. They are quite simply those things that have value to you. Often they can be quite abstract, and they are highly personal. Two people could have the same words for their values, and yet have quite a different meaning for those words. Being successful may be a value, but how do you describe success? Your description will almost certainly be different from someone else’s description of success.
Work values are the things that are most important to you in terms of your work. Life values are the things that are most important to you in terms of your life in general. If you change the context, then your values may change. For example what is important about the car you drive, what is important about the friends you have, what is important to you about the books you read. These different contexts will highlight different values.
Remember that values are personal to you. Other people will have different values. They are such an intrinsic part of who you are, that often you may not notice them. You may assume those things are equally important to everyone else. Often that is not the case, which is why you may find it hard to understand how other people can behave in ways that are unimaginable to you.
Once you are aware of your own values you can use them more consciously as a guidance system for decisions that you make. In the context of leadership, your values will act like a guide, ensuring that the decisions you make are more likely to be in alignment with your values. When leading a team, if the team have identified their values, then they can make decisions more easily. The clarity you will have, allows you as the team leader to justify decisions which are aligned with your values, and reject decisions which are misaligned with your values.
Take time to identify what is important to you within various contexts, and particularly in the
context in which you lead.
(To do this there are three questions to ask yourself:
- What’s important to you about (context, e.g. leading a team)?
- What do you mean by… (the answer to question 1)?
- Why is (the answer to question 1) important to you?
Repeat the same three questions until you run out of answers, then put the values in order of importance.
Review your values regularly they can change over time.
If you are about to make an important decision, consult your values.
The bulk of your motivation will relate to your core values. The likelihood is that you will be motivated to do something which is aligned with your values, and not motivated about something which is misaligned with your values.
Further excerpts from ‘How to Lead Your Team’ will be made available as articles in the coming weeks
To find out more about the book or to order a copy go to https://www.amazon.co.uk/Lead-Your-Team-Right-Balance