Effective leadership requires a leader to be both able and willing to listen effectively, and then to ask relevant questions. Only by doing this can a leader put himself into a position to provide the value that today's members and prospective leaders are seeking. This reality was succinctly stated by Albert Einstein, "Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is to not stop questioning."
1. Leaders must study the past to learn important lessons. What was done in the past is not sufficient knowledge, but rather understanding the nuances, what was successful (and why), and what had far less success, is essential information for effectiveness and responsiveness. Leaders must question the reasons that programs, efforts worked, and likewise why they might not have. They must also examine how the organization has changed and been transformed over the years, and ask the important questions related to the factors that may have been involved.
2. How has the organization been evolving in response to changing times and needs? What proactive measures might be taken to improve results, and provide greater value for its members, donors and sponsors? Why have certain individuals continued their involvement, while others let their membership lapsed? Has anyone ever conducted any types of surveys, and if so, how valid was that survey, and the questions asked?
3. Great leadership comes about when it learns its lessons well from the past, and used those lessons to provide wisdom in terms of how to operate and conduct business today. It is essential to effectively communicate with members, potential members, and those who have lapsed, in order to fully understand what they want, expect, need, and what their priorities are. Positive attitudes provide uplifting and motivating discussions, that result in true communication. Only by providing value (both real and perceived) can an organization flourish.
4. How will today's actions impact the future of the organization? How does the present course of action jive with the organization's mission, as well as the leader's vision for the future? How well is leadership really listening, and communicating, to enhance the group, and maximize relevance?
Every one is not set out to be a truly great leader. Some will truly lead, while others only hold some sort of position or title. No one has all the answers, but the effective leader must have the ability and willingness to question on a consistent basis. This is not usually necessarily a matter of right and wrong, but rather about learning needs of others, to be able to put yourself into a position to succeed.
With over 30 years consultative sales, marketing, training, managerial, and operations experience, Richard Brody has trained sales and marketing people in numerous industries, given hundreds of seminars, appeared as company spokesperson on over 200 radio and television programs. He's negotiated, arranged and organized hundreds of events.
Richard's owned businesses, been a COO, CEO, and Director of Development, as well as a consultant. His company Website is http://www.plan2lead.net/, and he can be followed on Twitter @rgbrody. For great information on many topics, visit PLAN2LEAD's Facebook page and LIKE ( http://www.facebook.com/Plan2lead )