It has been almost two years that the entire world has been turned upside down by the COVID Pandemic, everyone will agree that it has caused havoc and devastation, both regarding lives and livelihoods. Many lives were lost and in some cases Livelihoods were lost in these times…
- how could we foresee it?
- how could we avoid it?
- how could we survive it?
Some businesses did, others didn’t and the purpose of this article is not to determine the reasons why some did or didn’t, but more how some leaders responded to the pandemic and the impact thereof.
Company Leaders are also not only the ones with the titles, but the ones who stand up and lead, they lead in good times and in bad times, they lead not by what they can get out of it, but they lead by what legacy they can leave because of them being in a position to lead.
I thought it would be fitting to write about some of the key characteristics of what I believe, a titled or a non-titled leader should have:
1: Possess a sense of purpose
Great leaders wake up in the morning with a sense of purpose, they have a clear vision of where they want to be, where they want their team to be and where they want individuals to be, even if it is a mid to long term vision. Leaders should look at both today, tomorrow and almost be able to predict the future. They should see themselves as the Potter, and the business and its people the clay. They have a duty to share and drive their purpose with all stakeholders, get everyone on board and be instrumental in shaping the individuals to share the same sense of purpose. Even in the most troubled times of COVID19, successful leaders still managed to stand by their vision and see the future in an optimistic manner, even though world was in chaos.
2: Communicate Effectively
We most often miss the most important part of communication by failing to listen. Often we listen with the view to answer, instead of the purpose to understand. Great leaders can both listen, understand, show empathy and humility and yet still orchestrate all the parts into a greater symphony. A symphony is made up of many different instruments, all with different sounds, great leaders can listen at the sounds individually and then imagine them as one, the result is a performance worthy of praise.
3: Understand and appreciate the important value of each team member
As alluded to above, every individual in a team may have a different sound, a different skill. The same performance by an orchestra will be lost with even one sound missing at the right time at the right place. Each team member has a role to play, some are very specific, some are constant, some are at specific intervals, but everyone has a role to play to ensure the performance is praiseworthy. As much as the leader should listen, the leader should also be the conductor, and ensure that the instructions given are clear concise and the timing is spot on. A leader is the conductor who listens and makes it all come together.
“The very essence of leadership is that you have to have vision. You can’t blow an uncertain trumpet.” -Theodore M. Hesburgh
Article By: Pierre Marneweck