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Article – A Successful CEO’s Advice on Staff Development

By Lee Ellis

Great organizations love to win and be the best in their industry, and any competitive edge makes that success more likely. The vision of smooth-running, efficient, innovative, profitable, adept organization captivates most leaders’ aspirations, and it’s natural to have those goals. 

Not long ago after a speaking engagement, I enjoyed a corporate dinner event with the client and heard some great words of wisdom from the CEO. Earlier in the day, I had observed that the morale and energy of the group to be unusually high—even after a long day of training classes at a conference. Hearing the executive’s perspectives and observing his attitude and relationship with his managers helped me connect the dots about their culture. He was a leader who really understands how good relationships get better results.

His recipe for success came from both his experience and his heart. These ideas aren’t new, but sitting in the midst of a highly successful team and listening to their leader outline the “secret sauce” to their success was inspiring to everyone in the room including me.

Here are his ingredients –

  1. Get the right people. We need good people on our team. This is the starting place for success.
  2. Get the right people in the right roles/jobs. When a person’s talents, interests, and passions are matched to their work, they are less stressed, more energized, and more likely to add value to our mission.
  3. Communicate and clarify. Good communication is fundamental to cohesive teamwork. We must make sure that we are aligned in purpose and goals.
  4. Collaborate. This is where teamwork really comes through with people sharing ideas and supporting each other. When we have trust and work together, we have the synergy that can make 1 + 1 equal 3 (the concept that positive synergies can produce better results). Behavioral assessments and team training like those from Leadership Behavior DNA can quickly close the gap on this ingredient. Past clients see almost immediate results in team collaboration and synergy.
  5. Innovate. With talented, energetic people collaborating, we get the new ideas and improvements that make us more competitive, allowing 1 + 1 to equal even more than 3. This is how we compete successfully against all other organizations that have good people and the same resources.
  6. Grow competent healthy leaders. To do everything, we must have leadership that gets it. We need supervisors and managers who create an environment that facilitates the steps above.

In observing this leader and the group, the thing that impressed me most was that –

“Successful leadership has a healthy balance of confidence and humility. This sense of freedom and authenticity is engaging and energizing.” [Tweet This]

I can see how this company is a leader in their industry—especially when it comes to profitability.

If you’ve read my book, Leading with Honor, describing my time and leadership lessons learned as a Vietnam POW, you know that chapter 14 is entitled “Free the Captives” and tells about our release and return home. One of the key roles of leaders is to free the captives by helping people become all they can be.

Listening to this CEO speak, I got the strong impression that he gets it. I had the sense that there was a lot of freedom in the room. Even though they probably had not thought of it that way, it simply felt good to me and others.

“Great leadership always makes a difference.” [Tweet This]

Ultimately, you depend on people for your profits. Do you have a winning recipe for releasing the power of people? If not, take a look at the secret sauce above and identify steps you could take to take your team to a higher ROI.   

LE

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