Academic journal article Manager

Energy of a Leader

Academic journal article Manager

Energy of a Leader

Article excerpt

THE other day I was listening to a high powered business leader - a man who had just sold a part of the company for over £1 billion - advocating to new graduates in his organisation that they consider a new approach to leadership. "Too much intellectual energy isn't what this company needs" he said. "We've got enough good thinking already and people don't get inspired by intellectual prowess. What this business needs are leaders who can go out and build great relationships and inspire their people to believe that extraordinary results are possible. And this," he urged his audience, "requires you to go out and develop your emotional and spiritual energy."

What was he on about? Throughout their lives we educate young people to build their mental muscles and to prove to us that they are disciplined thinkers with bright ideas. So when they come into business, do we really want our best young people to develop a quite different set of skills?

I believe we do.

The Big Relationship

Let's start with emotional energy. If you consider for a moment a colleague with whom you have a poor working relationship, then what are the chances of you doing great work with them. Probably pretty low. But in contrast to that consider working with someone who you like and respect? When you have a big relationship you will probably go out of your way to complete a task or project faster and better than expected. Why? Because you want their continued high opinion. And it is for this reason that, whenever I'm coaching managers and leaders, I always talk to them about the relationships they have, and don't have, and ask them what it will take from them to improve the quality of their interactions and engagement with their colleagues. …

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