I decided to publish a guest blog. I receive several emails weekly from leaders in business and other facets of society. One of those business leaders is Robert Glazer. It has been enlightening to inform myself of CEOs’ and business leaders’ responses to the current pandemic’s challenges. This focus has been personally encouraging for me as well. Influential leaders do not whine or play the role of a martyr. They courageously and creatively chart productive paths forward.
Though my current physical challenges have been increasing over the past three years, it often feels to me like an “and suddenly!” And suddenly I have more difficulty walking, and suddenly my muscles ache, and suddenly my voice fails me, etc. I must remind myself of the difference between grieving the loss and whining about my current condition in those moments. Processing grief is a healing practice. Whining is a dead-end road to nowhere. Along with my sidekick (aka the Paraclete, aka the Holy Spirit), I must creatively and courageously chart a path forward. These CEOs and business leaders have become positive role models for me.
Leadership Qualities – 08/21/20
by Robert Glazer
Founder & CEO, Acceleration Partners
About the author:
Robert Glazer founded his company in 2007 based on the concept of a 100 percent remote workforce. There were plenty of doubters at the time. The success of his company belies the doubters. Glazer is in a postion to counsel other companies that must now utilize a remote workforce in light of Covid-19 restrictions. Glazer recently published an e-book entitled, How To Make Virtual Teams Work based on his experience and success.
(As edited: My Grammarly App suggested a few edits for the sake of readability)
“Over the years, I have read and saved many lists that detail the characteristics of historically great leaders from business, sports, politics, the military, and other areas. These ten leadership qualities continuously crop up, in no particular order:
1. Integrity: People want leaders they can trust to act for the greater good and tell the truth. We want leaders who behave according to their stated principles, are honest with us, and keep their word.
2. Humility: As we shift away from command and control leadership, we gravitate toward approachable leaders and don’t hold themselves above others. When leaders show humility and vulnerability, others instinctively want to work with them to achieve their goals.
3. Empowering Others: Great leaders trust the people on their team and coach them to make essential decisions without micromanagement. They don’t do everything themselves—instead, they set clear vision and values and direct others to work according to those guiding principles.
4. Effective Communication: Leaders must communicate well, move others to action, and ensure their directives are well-understood. It’s no surprise that we often celebrate leaders who deliver historic speeches or impactful quotes. Great leaders also give their teams the information they need to excel.
5. Forward-Thinking: A great leader sets a compelling vision for the future, attracting and convincing others to join their movement. These leaders can share their vision with clarity and specificity, and they are passionate about the execution of those goals.
6. Empathy: We want our leaders to demonstrate compassion and an ability to relate to those they lead, especially in moments of crisis. A leader cannot effectively lead someone if they fail to understand their fundamental needs and if they cannot connect others’ fulfillment to their own.
7. Competence: Leaders must be capable of doing the job at hand and surround themselves with competent people. Competent leaders don’t know how to do everything but are skilled at identifying people whose abilities complement their own and bringing them into the fold. They also aren’t afraid to hire people who are smarter than they are.
8. Accountable: Great leaders have a “the buck stops here” mentality. These leaders credit their teams for their successes and accept personal responsibility for the team’s failures. Poor leaders do the opposite, taking credit for their teams’ accomplishments and distancing themselves from accountability.
9. Gratitude: One of the core responsibilities of a leader is to consider the needs of the many. A mindset of gratitude pushes leaders to focus less on themselves and more on how they can value and strengthen others.
10. Self-Awareness: Leaders must be aware of their strengths and limitations. They have to build a team that magnifies their abilities and limits their weaknesses. Leaders are also open to criticism and willing to do the sometimes-painful work required to improve.
While we may never reach a consensus on political leadership, we must identify an apolitical benchmark by which we evaluate all our leaders. Outstanding leadership should be an objective metric, not a changing threshold viewed through a political or ideological lens; otherwise, the term itself is meaningless.
Finally, we should not have to shy away from holding our leaders accountable for results; the great ones do it for themselves.”