A leader in an organization can’t do everyone’s job. Instead of micromanaging, strong leaders use organizational leadership to coordinate, communicate, motivate and delegate among employees and team members. For comprehensive organizational effectiveness, each individual needs to be seen as a contributor, with the leader at the helm.
Most importantly, best-practices leadership involves keeping employees motivated throughout the process, adapting your scope or strategy as necessary, and developing an effective communication strategy.
Some people never make it to the other side because they’re more successful at being doers. This is a crucial point in determining if you’re going to move up the ranks.
Browse our articles, tools and advice on best-practices leadership.
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“Leadership is not magnetic personality,” says management guru Peter Drucker.
Napoleon’s defeat at Waterloo overshadows what is perhaps his biggest leadership gaffe.
Even when no one around you sees you as a leader, you can be one. That
was true of Sacagawea, the lone woman and only Native American on the
Lewis and Clark expedition. Although she remains a mystery, here are some of her leadership qualities, unrecognized at the time:
From the U.S. Marine Corps— leaders by definition, as its members are
often the first combatants in a military offensive—here’s a checklist
of leadership strategies:
Dennis Donovan describes his style of leadership as being an agent for
change. When he joined Home Depot as an executive vice president, his
goal was to put a human resources person in every store.
Most of us have had bosses so insecure that they could never let their employees succeed. Jack Winter was such a guy. Fresh out of college, he found himself in
Miami Beach on a venerable staff of comedy writers because TV celebrity
Jackie Gleason had picked some of his material. As it turned out,
Winter didn’t understand Gleason’s humor. What’s worse, Gleason turned
out to be a tyrant. Luckily for us, we can use his memories to become
better leaders. Some of Winter’s wonders:
A personal symbol can help you stay centered during tough times. Some real-world examples:
You start to think that you have to be perfect to be a leader. You have
to set perfect goals, make perfect speeches, arrive at perfect
decisions and motivate people perfectly. Not so. Even the greatest leaders have flaws. Sometimes very big flaws. Consider E. B. White, the legendary editor of The New Yorker.
Management fads make employees cynical, says coach and consultant Wolf
Rinke. They feel used and even abused. Eventually, they develop thick
skins so they can stay sane while playing the “Let’s pretend” game
during management’s next fad onslaught. To stop the insanity, Rinke points to research showing that four basic,
“somewhat nonsexy” practices lead organizations to outperform their
To former Pepsi executive Michael Feiner, “The Emperor’s New Clothes,”
written in 1837 by Hans Christian Andersen, is the greatest leadership
story ever told. You know the story. An emperor acts like a fool because his subjects
are too cowed to tell him the truth: that he’s been hoodwinked into
wearing invisible “clothes.” So, are your people telling you the truth? Here are some reasons why they might not be, and what you can do about it: