In my China post I once talked about making your workers feel like the hero‘s that they are. Today, I want to talk about one ditch called the desire to be a popular leader and the way to really be popular as a leader.
As leaders, we want our workers to like us, but we must not make being popular our goal. I like to think that I am a friend of those who are on line with the values and vision and an enemy of those who are on another path in the company.
However, I did let them go. Unfortunately, even among the right people, you will have to decide in unpopular ways at times. You cannot lead by consensus. You should not even lead by majority rules. You should let the most qualified person make the call, and sometimes that will be you. Make it and do not let popularity be your guiding force. Many leaders make this mistake without even thinking about it, and it is not the way for us to run our companies.
You may also hire leaders like this, and some can be coached as they are simply not self aware. Those that are not coachable need to be replaced.
So You Want To Be a Popular Leader?
Proper leaders are popular because they make things happen, and do not just follow the crowd. But mainly, they are popular as get to know their workers even at a personal level. They care for them and then the workers care back. Leaders take that initiative. To summarize, they are coachable and they coach.
Along with that, great leaders tend to see the best in people and draw it out while not overlooking the problems. Servant leadership thinking is our central path, but added on to that, our customers need certain extra capabilities while we protect them from the common one noted above.
Anyone can tell a great story, so SHI Group seeks leaders with a verified leadership record. In less experienced hires, we look for character factors like coachability and transparency. (It is shame that most dictionaries do not have this word nor teachability either)