Traditional leadership begins with an outside-in construct, whereby the leader first focuses on external factors that either support or challenge their leadership success. These external factors include any area that affects the organization other than themselves. When I’m invited into companies at the behest of the CEO or others senior leaders, often times they begin the meeting with going through a long laundry list of everything their teams are not doing and what they could do better. I listen until they have exhausted their list.
Then I politely ask them, “so now tell me about yourself and your leadership.” Then I hear them say, This isn’t about me.” Then I say, Oh…but it’s ALL about you!” This is the point in the conversation where it becomes evident to me whether or not the leader is a traditional leader and insists on focusing on everything and everyone other than themselves. The exceptional leaders willingly invoke the courage of introspection and are willing to look at themselves as the person who takes Personal Leadership accountability and responsibility for everything and everyone.
Making the transition from a traditional leadership mindset to one of Personal Leadership can be challenging for the leaders who are not willing to look inward. However, the leaders who chose to be transparent and authentic for the good of themselves and their teams place themselves within the ranks of the most successful and most influential leaders in the world.
Before you can lead others you must first learn to lead your own life. Angela’s many years as a corporate executive, entrepreneur and executive leadership coach at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business Global Executive MBA program; she discovered a startling observation regarding leaders.
When I ask leaders and executives what they think about themselves and how they lead versus what the people they lead think about them, there is a huge disparity. We help leaders pinpoint the misalignment between what they believe and what their teams believe. The first area a leader needs to look when assessing their team’s engagement and productivity is to look at the leader them self. We call this Personal Leadership. In order for leaders to tap into the power of their personal leadership, a leader must have the courage of introspection, which is the ability to look within them and recognize areas the leader may need to personally address. Courage of introspection is the precursor to leadership accountability.
Leadership accountability is the precursor for building trust. Angela Brown teaches from the basis that a leader must first learn to lead their own lives before they can effectively lead others. When leaders embrace the power of personal leadership and learn to lead themselves around certain skills and disciplines, it can propel leaders to the top 2% of all leaders worldwide. Leadership is ownership and we all have ownership over our values, decisions and our influence. Right or wrong, good or bad we get to choose. Developing a clear, authentic and foundational Personal Leadership Plan, will serve as the basis for solid confidence in leading teams and making decisions.
This personal leadership foundation will also provide the basis for your leadership authenticity and credibility, which is required to garner trust and respect from your team. The Personal Leadership Plan will also contain your personal vision and values that will be your leadership compass and guide. When a leader is equipped with a solid personal leadership foundation, only then will the leader be able to effectively move to the next level of Relational Leadership.
Relational Leadership is where the leader can now come from a position of authenticity and credibility as they begin to connect with others to form meaningful and trusting relationships. Angela and her team’s mission is to help leaders engage their teams, build team trust and most importantly become more accountable to their own success and thus the organization’s success.
Using our unique tool called The R-4 Factor of Personal Leadership Effectiveness, we help leaders and teams develop their own personal leadership accountability plan that connects to a common mission.