Leaders Focus On These Five Attributes
For the past several years, my son Jared has been interested in leadership books written by former Navy SEALs. A number of these former officers have formed consulting companies that focus on training business executives and their teams in a variety of leadership functions. Some of them have written books summarizing the lessons they learned during their years of service.
One such author is Rich Diviney. His new book is titled “The Attributes – 25 Hidden Drivers of Optimal Performance.” Recently Diviney was interviewed by Vanessa Burke of McKinsey & Company about his book. Several of his points resonated with me and I want to share them with you.
Remember how we have addressed the belief that leadership is more about “being” than “doing?” Leaders must look in the mirror to assess who they are before they can focus on all the tasks or projects they wish to achieve..
Diviney puts it this way: “What we have to understand about leadership is that there’s a difference between being in charge and being a leader—one’s a noun and one’s a verb. Anybody can be in charge, and you can put people in charge, and you can self-designate. You can say, “I’m in charge,” right?”
He continues, “You can’t do that with leadership; you’re not allowed to call yourself a leader. That’s like calling yourself funny or good-looking. It’s other people who decide whether or not you are someone they want to follow. If they look at you as a leader, then you are a leader. Otherwise, you’re just in charge.”
Diviney believes that that happens through your behaviors, and the key leadership attributes speak to those behaviors. According to Diviney, the critical leadership attributes are:
He notes, “Those behaviors typically are the ones that cause other people to say, “That is someone I would like to follow.”
We have addressed several of these attributes during the 70-odd weeks of this weekly newsletter. How frequently do you pause to think about them? How intentional are you about looking in the mirror and assessing your behavior in these key areas.
I invite you to find a quiet place and sit down to rate yourself in these five significant attributes on a scale of 1-10. Better yet, ask your teammates (anonymously to ensure honesty) to rate you in these five attributes. Make time to compare your answers with your teammates’ answers.
Finally, ask yourself what is one action you could take in each of these five areas to move the arrow in an upward direction.
I guarantee you that will be a worthwhile endeavor!