How to Be an Executive who Leads

3 min read · 7 years ago


Executive LeadershipMaybe you can relate to this work example…

Jim is in position to take over a company, but he is getting pressure from executives he works with who think his talk about more change for the company and constant need for better customer service is not needed and a waste of time. The executives Jim works with talk about how the company has experienced success over the last ten years and look at Jim as someone who doesn’t appreciate the company’s past achievements and service to clients. Jim is looking at major changes in processes and a stronger connection with clients. Jim has a great staff that is eager to embrace new concepts and is ready to move the company forward.

The example above is sadly more common place than we like to believe.

Many executives today are afraid of change and are trying to hold onto the past. Just listen how they talk everyday. Most of these executives always want to point to past accomplishments because they have no desire to change or learn new concepts. These type of people also hold on to tasks because they feel by changing, they are giving away some of the power they currently have. This isn’t some new phenomoneon. However, this situation is coming to light because of the rapid changes in technology and our current culture where the client is in control.

If you want to be a great leader, you need to approach each day with a vision for the future. Past accomplishments are nice, but it is important to always work at looking ahead and identifying potential opportunities and resolving current needs. Don’t fall into the trap of not learning new concepts on a daily basis. One of the best ways I have found to work with executives who are stuck in the past, is to monitor their productivity. Hopefully, you have a project management system in place and you have assigned tasks to the people you work with. By documenting their progress or lack of progress allows you to manage the process much better. Your role as a leader is to make sure people are engaged in some way.

Next, make sure you really work at building your relationships inside the company. Earning co-workers trust is a huge driver for me. As a leader, you set the tone for the company and remember people are always watching you. Sadly, top executives who are stuck in the past usually have a warped sense of current relationships at your company or have completely disconnected themselves from others.

Finally, don’t waste your time trying to figure out how to change these type of people or confront these people. I know from experience, this type of action can consume your time and produce little if any results. Focus on the people in your company who are the difference-makers. Create a culture where people want to come to work each day and contribute. Work on developing your own strengths and keep looking ahead.

Picture Source: Pixabay

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