If we just had more talent, we would win.
This sentiment is a warning sign. Obviously, if you have more talent than your competitor you increase the odds of winning. The claim, however, becomes destructive in some organizations: It’s a shield meant to deflect the responsibility for developing and activating the talent already in the organization.
It’s an appealing proposition: Hire the best talent, throw them into the fray, “get out of their way,” and ta-da! Improved results appear. That’s not leadership, however. That’s an attempt to short-cut a requisite of excellence: The responsibility every leader has for developing the talent – the team – they already have.
Expecting others to “behave accordingly,” without investing in developing capabilities as essential as healthy teamwork dynamics, is hubris
. “I’m perfect and have succeeded despite hardships, and therefore expect you ‘just do’ the same,” is a disregard a more diverse approach.
Hiring great talent is only a cue that our most important leadership has just begun.