12 Aug 2015 17:20 IST

Leadership begets leadership

Leading is no mean feat. But it’s imperative to be a good leader in this day and age. Follow this road map to put yourself on the right track

In the previous part of this article, as a roadmap, I had put down the areas that will be looked into in more detail in this two-part series on leadership. In the previous article I had spoken about the importance of:

1) Setting up a compelling vision/mission statement

2) Evolving a strategy to achieve this

3) Organising the resources and people required to achieve this

4) Creating enabling organisational culture and values

In that article, I had discussed in-depth the above points. In this one, I will focus my attention on elaborating on the last two points.

Set goals, communicate, galvanise/motivate the organisation towards that goal

Goals are just milestones to measure your progress towards your vision/mission. It also tells you how effective your strategy has been and/or the quality of your organised efforts. Every organisation needs to translate its vision/mission into concrete measurable goals and targets.

It is not only important that these goals or targets are aligned with overall vision/mission strategy but also are well communicated and understood across organisational level.

These will have to be defined in a fashion that they don’t just motivate but galvanise people into action.

Great leaders use their communication skills to achieve this. And this is not one time effort. It has to be constant and enduring activity.

Create an appropriate monitoring, reviewing and rewarding mechanism

What gets done is not necessarily what is planned. Often, what gets done is what gets measured, and monitored, and rewarded. If copying is overlooked, where is the incentive for being honest and get poor grades in that process, particularly when the grading is relative?

A ship can be steered to the destination only if you have idea of where you are headed, by when you should reach, by which route, what resources required etc. Without these, it is good enough to start-off, but not good enough to reach the destination.

The leadership needs to constantly monitor the progress, reaching milestones, weather along the way, need for mid-course corrections and making those corrections happen.

Reward right behaviour/action; disincentivise wrong ones are essential components of this. Wise leadership spend enormous time on these.

Now, all these are not one time job. They are also not sequential, once you are on the way. Things change, Context, environment, people and society changes. What was relevant once is no longer so. Hence one of the requirements for sustained performance over long period of time is this ability on the part of the leadership team to constantly be on the vigil, work on reviewing reworking the need to refine the vision/mission, strategy, culture and so on real time and simultaneously.

Some of you might have read the latest on the way in which ‘Inmobi’ is trying to tackle the issues related to ‘people management’ effectively. There is a lot to learn here. It is a company growing like crazy and it is less than 10 years old!

But it’s still trying to make an attempt at instilling leadership-based skills.

There is a lesson in this that is worth pondering over…