When managers see their role as a small cog in a bigger system they do whatever they can to fit in. They trade power for conformity.
Their team yearns for bold vision, challenging questions, and scaffolding support. But they look up and see weakness, which makes them feel weaker and diminishes results.
Nothing saddens me more than potential leaders who give away their power. Feeling powerless to change the game, they buckle down and support, but don’t inspire.
Somehow they think this approach will inspire loyalty and translate to results. They’re in no position to empower, because they have not power to share. Great leaders generate power and then share it.
5 Ways to Regain Leadership Power
Teams are empowered by power. Be sure you have enough to share.
- Connected – Build great relationships up down and sideways. Your team longs for a leader who’s in the game, and teaches them how to play it.
- Courageous – Stop complaining about the system, or what can’t be done. If you really think you’re powerless, step down and let someone else be the leader.
- Creative – Help your team find solutions in the areas they feel most helpless
- Challenging – Encourage your team to do more than they ever thought possible. Expect a lot. Keep raising the bar. Forget benchmarks and establish higher standards. Celebrate progress and build desire for what’s possible.
- Calm – Stay above the fray. Buffer the madness, but also teach them how to sail in a storm.
Yes, this is part of our crowd-sourced e-book series on the Biggest Mistakes Team Leaders Make, so please share your stories.