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Why leaders fail

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in Leaders & Managers,Leadership Skills

Everyone agrees that leadership is vital. But what is it, and why does it sometimes fail? Common leadership problems can keep organizations from thriving. Problems arise when a leader:

  • Gets sucked in by the latest trends or fads in management. That is the eager beaver syndrome. The leader constantly attends seminars or hires consultants. He comes to the office bubbling over with the desire to set aside current plans and goals in favor of new, improved ones. Problem: The leader is learning too quickly to be able to evaluate the information he’s taking in or to integrate it into day-to-day operations. Solution: Leaders should listen to those valued staff members who question new ideas. Too often a leader will label objections as “change-resistant.”
  • Kills people with kindness. Being too considerate can spell disaster for leaders. Some leaders begin to see staff members as their responsibilities—their wards. The leader worries “Am I pushing them too hard?” Problem: The leader’s misplaced concern holds back the staff’s progress. Solution: Leaders must realize that they’re managing grown men and women. A good leader should keep his staff a little uncomfortable—always learning.
  • Ignores staff members’ career needs. Sometimes leaders fail to acknowledge employees’ aspirations, believing that staffers should stick to the jobs they were hired to do. Problem: When leaders pigeonhole an employee, they deprive themselves of a great resource and make the employee unhappy in the process. Solution: For employees to thrive, leaders must acknowledge and nurture people’s dreams of moving on to better things. Allow ambitious employees to grow by offering training, delegating challenging duties and keeping them informed about opportunities in the organization.


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