If you are a fan of these blogs then you have noticed that we often discuss the importance of a healthy and dynamic culture. Business icon, Peter Drucker, once said, “Culture eats strategy for breakfast.” I challenge you to Google culture; you will see thousands of articles that confirm Drucker’s statement. You need to be aware that there is a driving force that will determine whether you create a successful culture or not, it’s leadership.
All success in business is leadership driven. If leadership is not committed to creating the right work environment you have no shot. There have been many articles written about what successful leadership looks like, but for this blog I want to boil it down to the 7 C’s. The 7 are as follows: clarity, certainty, commitment, communication, confidence, compassion and calmness. Lets examine each of these characteristics.
1. Clarity is all about knowing who you are, what you are about and where you are going. People will follow leaders who can articulate their vision and do so with enthusiasm and passion. They get everyone around them excited for the journey, therefore making leadership’s vision the vision of the organization.
2. Certainty creates a belief system that nothing is impossible. That the outcome is never in doubt. Certainty is not just the words you use, but it is also how you carry yourself and your attitude.
3. Commitment creates an organizational mind-set to never give up or give in, even in the face of great adversity. Without commitment there are no results. There are reasons or results. Pick one, you can’t have both.
4. Communication is an essential ingredient to strong leadership. People want to hear from their leaders regularly. They want to be spoken to in clear and honest language. They want to know if they are doing their jobs effectively or not and they need to be acknowledged when they are doing good work. Praise the behavior you want.
5. Confidence breeds confidence. When leadership exhibits confidence in their team the team is far more likely to rise to the occasion. This is expectation management. What you put out you get back.
6. Compassion shows that you care. People will go to the mat for a leader who shows genuine interest in their people. When you care, they care.
7. Calmness shows a measured approach. No one likes a tyrannical leader who flies off the handle. One of the greatest examples of calm leadership occurred on 9/11/2001. New York’s Mayor, Rudolph Giuliani, was lauded in the face of great uncertainty because he remained calm on the outside when on the inside he was very fearful of what would happen next. The fact is, he remained calm and gave his people the confidence they could get through this tragic event.
Leadership is the root of a successful culture. The stronger the root is, the more dynamic the culture. To transform your culture requires intentional leadership that is strong in each of the 7 C’s. Evaluate your leadership’s skill sets in each of these areas. Rate on a scale of 0-10. If you rate 8 or below in any of these areas, what steps do you need to take to strengthen your skills? Your future success in business will be determined on the actions you take.