Throughout my entire life, I have always been asked to lead. You are probably thinking, “so what?” Here is the interesting part – I never sought out a leadership role in anything. And I think I understand why.
When I was in high school I was asked to lead in sports, the classroom, and a club.
In college, I was asked to take on leadership roles in my fraternity and in student government including serving as student body president.
After taking over our small family business when my father unexpectedly died, I was asked to take on leadership roles in a variety of not-for-profit organizations including my church, Rotary Club locally and at an international level, and serving on my national trade association’s board of directors.
The Governor of Texas even asked me to run for the Texas State Senate (though I was not active in politics).
I don’t share all of this so you can pat me on the back.
I share this because I have observed and experience in my own life that…
The key to becoming the most effective leader is to emphasize BOTH relationships AND results in your leadership.
This type of leadership can be challenging, and it is sure not taught in typical business school classes.
In fact, without the necessary knowledge and role models, many people gravitate to one of the two extremes in the management spectrum.
Let’s look at these two types of managers.
The “Taskmaster” Manager
Most people’s bent or bias is to manage to results.
Sometimes a person with a results bias goes too far. They become a “Taskmaster” manager.
“Taskmaster” managers have good intentions and tend to think that the drive for results is the solution to everything.
They believe that enhancing relationships is too time-consuming and not as important as results.
The “Country Club” Manager
Some people’s bent or bias is to manage relationships.
“Country Club” managers tend to be people pleasers.
With good intentions, they spend an enormous amount of time visiting with people, loving on them, patting them on the back, and kissing babies.
These people can be fun to be around, but very little gets done. They hope results will follow or expect somehow, results will just show up.
Which one would you choose?
Here is an interesting question…Which manager above (”Taskmaster” or “Country Club”) would you like to work for?
Fun people pleaser
I have found most people say the “Country Club” manager because it sounds enticing, like a carrot dangled in front of you.
However, I have observed most people will quit a “Country Club” manger much sooner than a taskmaster manager.
Why? Because deep inside of us is a yearning to accomplish something worthwhile.
If I came home after working for the “Country Club” manager and my wife asked me what I did today, I would stutter and look confused because I could not tell her what I accomplished for the day.
I’d probably respond, “I had fun at work, but I got little done for the day”. It would not be too long before I would get tired of all the fun stuff and quit because I really want to accomplish something.
If I came home after working for the “Taskmaster” manager and my wife asked me what I did today, I would proudly give her a long list of accomplishments.
Even though I was tired and worn-out from work, I’d feel good about what I had accomplished. However, I could only withstand the “pressure cooker” for so long and would eventually quit.
The Effective Leader
There is a third option, and that is what I call the “Effective Leader”.
For most people, it requires some changes and some work to get there, but leadership effectiveness is within your reach!
Every manager or leader can experience exponential effectiveness by becoming an Effective Leader.
Only a few people learn the skills to BOTH build relationships (how they say and do) AND get results (what they say and do). In other words, leading AND managing.
This is the leader that employees long to work for, and when they find one, they usually make that job a career.
Have others asked you to take on a leadership role not only at work but outside your work life? Which manager/leader above fits you? Would you like to learn the skills to be an effective leader? Please let me hear your thoughts by clicking <here>.