This month in our Leadership Symposium at work we started discussing John Maxwell’s book about growth. The book focuses on personal growth and how we can become the best we can be.
In one of the discussions, someone raised the question as to how these laws applied to “leadership” and I promised to think about it.
So this post, is my way of saying (with a “Barney Stinson” passion): “Challenge Accepted”
Law of Intentionality – Growth Doesn’t Just Happen
It’s truly amazing how many managers I’ve heard say “My door is always open, why don’t they come talk to me about their problems?” or a different version of the same concept, “I’m here, so let them come“.
How about this one “Whenever I get a leadership position, I’ll learn (insert whatever leadership task you want)“.
I’m sorry to say we couldn’t be more wrong with this mentality. The truth is, I was one of those. Just living the dream of going with the flow and winging it. So sad! For the first 18 months managing, I didn’t even know how to delegate! I did it all!
I used all the Gaps John mentions in the book: timing, knowledge, assumption, mistake, perfection, inspiration, comparison, and expectation.
Leadership experience doesn’t just come knocking. Casting a vision takes effort and planning, connecting with others takes energy, assigning tasks in areas of strengths takes reflection and learning about the staff…Since every individual is different, we must learn what works best for us and what works best for each person we lead. The only way to learn is doing the homework, taking the notes, scheduling 1×1 meetings, finding common talking points and testing our methods and approaches. All these tasks need focused intention.
So how does this law relate to leadership? Leadership is meeting people where they are and taking them to where they can be; this requires us to be intentional about knowing them. After all, we are more likely to follow someone we know cares about us than the jerk that like to give us orders.
“People don’t care how much you know, until they know how much you care” – John Maxwell
Nota: para la versión en español presione aquí.