5 Leadership Lessons: Ultimate Leadership - Leading in Context
An important concept in helping you to synthesize all of the leadership material you find is presented in Ultimate Leadership by Russell Palmer. The central idea is that there are basic principles of leadership that all effective leaders apply regardless of their personal leadership style, but they often need to be applied in a very different manner depending on the circumstances and the constituent groups involved.
Success or failure can often depend on modifying leadership styles to suit a different context.
General P.X. Kelly: "Listen carefully to the principles of leadership we will teach you here at Quantico, but always apply them within the framework of your own personality. A successful leader never languishes in the comfort of a swivel chair. The most important of all troop-leading steps, yet the one most often neglected, is the last – to supervise. And you supervise by being out with and devoting the bulk of your time to our most important product – people. You can always catch up on what you thought was essential paperwork during the evenings or on weekends, but once neglected, you will find it extremely difficult, if not impossible, to catch up on people."
When they have to lead partners and peers who have relatively narrow specializations, leaders need a broad view. One of the problems in today’s society is that we develop more and more people with narrowly specialized knowledge. The best subject from an educational standpoint for a leader is the study of history. Reading biographies is also particularly helpful.
Too often we view failure and adversity as the absence of success, whereas in reality they are just stations along the way that have to be passed through in order to reach your goals. That is why I believe tenacity and resilience are among the most important attributes of leaders, and never more so than when leading change. It’s critical that you understand what success is, in the eyes of your followers, if you are going to bridge their aspirations with your and cause real change.
Clarity is the antidote to anxiety.
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