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Why Do You Lead? What Are You Trying to Accomplish?
Is the reason you are leading your team a worthwhilecause, do you have a clear vision of exactly what you aretrying to accomplish and does your team know what that vision is? Is your vision worth the time and effort you devote towards achieving it every day?
I hope these questions start the creative juices flowing and allow you to see the importance of having aworthwhile vision and a purpose, which you can actuallyhang your hat on. Unless you have a meaningful purposeand a clear vision for where you want your business and your team to go in the future, you will feel like you arefloundering in the dark and achieve very little each year.
The time and effort you invest into getting clarity about exactly what you want to achieve both personally and inyour business, will pay you back ten, twenty and even fiftytimes, in saved effort and results down the road. What are you waiting for, until you as the leader, have complete clarity about what you and your team will achieve in the future and you consistently communicate this to all stake holders. Your team will continue to be like a rudderless boat approaching a dangerous waterfall. All your teammembers will fell like they are out of control and they will have no real purpose or reason to extend themselves daily, always striving to deliver their best.
You as the leader must find the dream or vision for your team. Then through great leadership and influence, you must inspire them to support you, so that you can realise this vision. The people who follow you will look to your leadership first and then over time they will buy into your vision. John Maxwell said it so well when he said "The leader finds the dream and then the people. The people find the leader and then the dream" Your role as a leaderis to get people to buy into you as the leader first and then over time they will buy into the vision.
People dont follow a vision; they follow worthy leaders, who have great vision. It is crucial that you are able to make this important distinction as a leader. Youmust be the example and epitomise all the traits you wantto see in your team and they will reflect this back to you. People follow leaders who they respect and can offer them guidance, support and opportunity. If you can consistently offer all or most of these to your team, theywill follow you and support you and the vision of the team or organisation.
When your team have enough reason to buy into you as their leader and they feel confident enough to supportand follow you, they will gladly support and buy into yourvision. When I was starting my speaking career a few years ago, I approached every speakers bureau possible. Theyunderstood my vision and what I was trying to achieve. Yet none of them were interested in booking me for a speaking gig, as they had not seen what I could do and had not bought into me as a speaker. As time has passedand I have earned my stripes and the bureaus have bought into me as a speaker, they now know, like and trust me and regularly book me for speaking gigs.
The same is true for building the relationship with your team members. It takes time to get them to buy into you as a leader and for them to see that they can trust you tolead them. Have patience and commit to keep building the buy in from your team daily. Over time they will buy into you as their leader and they will consistently give their best to support you, the team and the overall vision.
The message you want to deliver to your team about yourvision, will always be filtered by the impression they have of you and by how much they have bought into you astheir leader. The person who delivers the message is what makes the message believable or not. This is the reason why marketers use well known personalities to promote their products. People are far more likely to believe a message and trust the content of the message if they like and can relate to the person delivering the message. Themore credible you are as the leader of your team and themore you show them that they can trust you, the easier it will be for you to get your team to buy into your vision.People want to work with and support people they relate to and get along with.
You can never separate your vision from you as the leader.People will not follow any vision or cause, no matter how good it is, unless they know, like and trust the leader. A great leader with a poor vision may still receive the support of his team and they may be willing to followthem as their leader. A poor leader with a fantastic vision on the other hand will not even get people to consider following a great vision. The best solution to lead and inspire any team to greatness, is to be a great leader first, which your team sees as authentic and they can trust. Then develop and communicate a great vision to your team and everyone will support you.
Consistently share your hopes and dreams with your team. Strive to be an authentic trustworthy leader and your team will follow you with confidence and supportyour vision. Your success as a leader is measured by your ability to positively influence people to follow you and your vision; to a place of success and achievement. Themore you as a leader support everyone in your team, themore they will buy into you as their leader and the better the results you and your team will achieve