Leadership occurs in your organization one of three ways:

  1. There is no leadership. There’s no direction, no clarity of priorities, expectations, accountability nor motivation.
  2. Leadership is driven from the top. The person with the most authority or power is required for decision making, creating clarity, establishing expectations, holding people accountable, or motivating team members.
  3. Leadership comes from the members of the team. In this scenario, while direction may still be set from above, execution of plans is wholly transformed. Now the members of the team make key decisions, create clarity, set expectations, hold each other accountable and activate motivations for each other.

I recently shadowed a high-performing team in action. They modeled this third approach to leadership in remarkable ways, including:

  • In their meetings you couldn’t tell who had the most authority. (In most organizations, the highest ranking person does most of the talking or decision making.) Everyone was participating in discussions and decision making.
  • Peers held each other accountable. They told the truth, asked questions and provided candid assessments of progress with projects.

This third orientation to leadership has such a tremendous impact on results we’ve replicated it in all our leadership development solutions. Here’s why: When developing leaders, the instructors that know and care the most are the colleagues in your organization. The best feedback and accountability mechanisms are peers.

The only leadership development program worth the investment includes a systemic method to perpetuate on-going development after the initial days of the program. And you don’t have to go far for this solution: Every employee in your organization can play a role.

Leadership is fleeting when it’s a role reserved for a few. Sustaining, perpetuating leadership is a culture. Are you developing it?

Activate Your Greatness.

Activate Your Greatness.

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