Kahlil Gibran in his book, ‘The Prophet’ described work as I see it best…”Work is love made visible”
In my job as CEO, I often have to remind myself of these words to get through the day. Sometimes the decisions I am required to make do not have much love attached to them. Many times, some of the folks I meet have no thought of love, and likewise I have nothing anywhere near that in my mind. All I can do is to solve the problem as quickly as possible and move on.
So at my level many decisions do not expose me to pleasant conditions.
In the book he suggests that leaders think of work as an orchestra with many skilled artists. Guiding them to play the best music possible is when all of them work together and you win with audience screaming for more. One instrument off, and you don’t have that much success.
The philosophy or belief of a strong leader is to prepare for the worst. In other words, with half the orchestra playing, can you still make music that is appreciated by the paying customers? This means selecting a few key players [instruments] that can operate on their own, or with minimum back up, and still make good music.
So let’s consider what characteristics a leader should have:
- Share responsibility of the project or job with team members or staff.
- Distribute information regularly to all team members – leave no one out.
- Have several ideas for a project and test them. Must have 3D vision and look around corners for the unexpected.
- Make sure that in the scenarios you have, that one is for failure, so that you have a back up plan [not everything always works] to start again and not lose all from your efforts.
- Always make sure that the team working for you has all types of people included so you get many views – if only from questions they ask and for you to consider.
- Ask what worked well before, and how can we adapt and learn from that project, or work procedure.
- Plan for more people if successful, as orders will increase – allow for training and hiring.
- Make sure that the team or the second tier leaders give it their all and not be weighed down with other responsibilities that over shadow the new plans.
- Hold weekly meetings to reflect on current success or failure, and be prepared to change. Let each member chair this meeting so they gain experience.
- As this project or change in work procedures moves along, note who is helping, who are just present and who have little interest. Make the necessary decisions so you move forward with the correct team on board.
In conclusion, you are either a leader, or not. There is no space for any other type of character, and the opening message of this blog is clear, work is enjoyed, and others can see that.