Aiming (your organization) before you pull the trigger

Business planning. Is it exciting, or a painful management exercise you should hope you’re sick for?

It’s one of the most important things that (senior) leaders do. There are no guarantees that you’ll do it right, other things can unexpectedly come into your environment and mess with your plans, your team could screw up the implementation, and it’s easier to just keep doing what you’re doing.

Enter: leadership; not management, not people in leadership positions, but leadership.
Leaders live between two worlds. The one you’re standing in, and the one they are working to bring about. They can taste what the future will be like, and they understand the challenges of getting there.

When the pressure is on, it feels like DOING is the most productive thing you can spend time on. Sometimes this is true. But the more strategic your job is, the more conceptual and nebulous the challenges you’ll face, and the more impact you have. This is why aiming before you pull the trigger is totally essential. Leaders affect change by unleashing the resources of the aligned workforce. The choices they make flow through many people, and have the potential to create tremendous impact.

Putting the work in up front, crafting a strategy that has been deeply considered, pays off in spades as the resources of an entire organization come online to implement.

The impact of your leadership

Leadership can sometimes feel counter-intuitive. It requires a balance between putting your efforts into tasks you can accomplish on your own, and enabling the efforts of those you lead.

Enter: The strategic responsibilities of the leader.
When stressed, many pull back to the projects or tasks they can personally control and have impact on. However, nowhere do leaders have a greater impact than when they conduct the activities that enable the efforts of the whole team. These include:
• Making decisions about how to reposition for the future
• Prioritizing where to focus effort
• Choices about when to start AND stop effort in a certain direction
• Solving difficult problems others don’t want to touch
• Helping employees understand future and current direction
• Enabling other leaders to become greater

The impact you have individually can be great. The impact you can have through proficient leadership is exponential.