Leaders who destroy Vs Leaders who deliver

My colleague and dear friend is great at finding interesting stuff to post on Linkedin – this infographic created A LOT of interest!

Some stats:  37 410 Views, 90 reshares.  90 Executive leaders viewed the post and 1444 HR experts viewed the post.

Why is this infographic so popular?

Looking at some of the comments, it seems we have all at some point worked for a “leader who destroys” ….

One comment “I know a few leaders who sit in the destroy column ‘my way or no way’.”

Although not really expressed in the infographic, a failure to listen and make use of your team ideas is a key failure in Leaders.  A command and control attitude is fine in a supervisory role in certain types of teams but they are very few.

My view is that your team is there to deliver the business goals and leaders should have trust in the team to know their jobs best and to collaborate to achieve.  If a Leader is too dictatorial, good ideas and improvements are lost.  Usually it only takes a couple of rejections of good ideas for the team member to think ‘what is the point of even trying to improve things if I am not listened to?’

On the positive side one comment says, “the ones who deliver are so much easier to work for – and you actually want to work for them.”

This is a chicken and egg comment – what comes first, the desire to do your best for a leader or a leader who is “easy” to work for?  My view is that an upward spiral of productivity and motivation is created by this behaviour.

Why is this Infographic so popular?

Morbid fascination mainly.  Most of us have had bad leaders and bosses and we like to look at information that confirms our suspicions of what bad behaviours are.  In HR we see it far more than the regular team member!

What was my reaction as a leader?

Looking at this as the leader of a company, my attention went first to the destroy column to gratify myself that I was culpable of the behaviours described. I suppose one is partially true for me – talking too much about accountability.

In my defence I am keen that the team take responsibility for their roles and for their part in the team as a whole.  I recognise I need to change my language around responsibility vs accountability.

I’ve also learnt a lot from the leaders who deliver.   I particularly like sharing the maximum amount of information I can and try hard to create conditions for motivation to flourish.  I’ve found flexibility, interesting work and an attractive environment to be a big draw to get great people to work for you.

Where did this come from?

The www.performanceroom.co.uk is a free (then paid for) online “human performance” resource run by a team of executive coaches (www.planetK2.com).  I think they are worth a look if you are after good coaches – they appear to have a direct and down to earth approach.  I get the feeling they don’t let their coaches off the hook easily!  Which is want you really need in a great coach.