A Sneak Peak at Leadership Research Findings
[Missed Part 1? Click here]
Our focus on leadership development for the next generation continues this week with a look at how and why tomorrow’s leaders can and should develop means to stay in-the-know.
Our research clearly shows that great leaders (and great salespeople) think about relationships differently. Successful leaders view interactions not only as opportunities to transact, but also opportunities to learn. Few of us focus on the value of trusted relationships as a source of information.
The relationship between relationships and information:
Step 5: Engineering Your Network: We’ve talked at length about the importance of tying your goals to the people most critical to your success, but great networkers develop many non-transactional relationships as a way to stay-in-the loop on what’s being said and done around them.
As you develop your relationship strategy make sure to consider people in other departments, functions and levels. And since not all that matters happens inside the hallowed halls of your organization, think about the external links that could help keep you informed: partners, customers, competitors and other business, social and civic leaders.
It’s likely your network already includes many of these categories but how purposeful and diligent are your efforts?
Step 6: Seek Formal & Informal Mentorship: Youth may be wasted on the young but don’t let the value of mentorship fade in the same vein. No matter your age or stage, there are people out there that have done what you hope to do, have done it better or done it differently. And while I’ma man of a certain age, I’m finding the value of mentorship has never been more important. The leaders I’ve interviewed, to a person, agree.
Step 7: Offer Formal & Informal Relationships with Mentees: Just as there is always someone that’s already been there and done that; don’t forget the value of your own experience! A senior leader helping an aspiring leader that helps a young grad that helps a freshman that convinces a high school student to stay in school…and the virtuous cycle continues. If you are new to mentoring, you’ll be surprised to learn that you always get more and learn more than you are giving….
“No man can help another without helping himself in the process.”
(Ralph Waldo Emerson)
Next week we’ll complete the list and begin the discussion about how you can put these principals into action to rapidly accelerate your career…
As always, if you have comments or just want to continue the conversation, reach out to me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.