A quick online search will quickly reveal the myriad books and resources on management and leadership philosophies. Like self-help books, these tools fly off the shelves and are frequently replace with new versions of “expert” hot-takes on what makes a good leader and how to impact company culture. Trends will come and go, but the core truth remains the same: leadership is the biggest impact on corporate culture and what makes a good leader is straightforward. Here it is.
Communicating Vision and Obtaining Buy-In From Your Team
A good leader is able to cast a compelling vision in a way that is clear, people “get it”, and they feel compelled to get on board and help to achieve it. Visionaries are not always executioners so they need strong people to help carry out the vision and be excited to do so, especially when it’s innovative and novel and, therefore, requires risk. Eyal Gutentag at Uber and leaders at Netflix encouraged their teams to disrupt the status quo.
Walking the Walk
Leaders can present core values and mission all day long, but if they don’t act by example, then corporate culture is not change. Culture is not influenced by the stated beliefs but by how those values and beliefs are lived. Out every day in how the business is run and in interpersonal skills with colleagues and peers. This grows in complexity as the organization does, but leadership. Much like character, is very much about what you do when no one is looking.
Leadership is Know Your People
People are unique and the way they are manage should be, too. If an employee is motivate by affirmation, give them recognition. If they are motivated by work-life balance, give them a flex schedule. Know what is going on in their lives outside of work and take an interest.
Leadership is easily define but less frequently delivered. Executing these three areas well will help to ensure you develop a high-performing team and a positive company culture.