- ‘ Cases of rape rise to 84% in Nigeria’
- Dana air crash update: 23 aircrash victims’ families yet to receive compensation
- Mimiko inaugurates new Mother & Child hospital today
- N4.56b pension scam: Female accused hospitalised,trial stalled
- Construction workers hail FG’s decision on Lagos-Ibadan expressway
- Senate adjourns plenary for 1 week, dissolves to Appropriation committee.
- Blackout looms as Egbin power plant breaks down
- FMBN, NEXIM, BOA, IB lose N47bn in 6 months - CBN
- FirstBank wins Nigerian Bank of the Year award
- PDP tackles ACN over Tukur’s comments
- Electricity workers threaten strike over Wamakko
- ‘NDIC prosecuted 55 directors, staff of micro finance banks in 2011’
- Judgment in Oni’s appeal stalled, re-fixed for Jan 8
- Slain banker: Deceased had only 3 wounds -Accused’s father
- Appointments: S/West not marginalised —FCC
Strategic leadership and repentance (3)
In developing his network, the leader must constantly ask himself, ‘Who has what we need and who needs what we have?’ Once this question can be appropriately answered, the next challenge is to connect with them.
For strategy to succeed, the leader must be able to create a thrust and sustain the momentum. The challenge of any vision or project is defining what will motivate arrival at the destination. Apart from constantly casting the vision before all concerned, there is a need to engage and sustain passionate pursuit in all concerned. A clearly defined vision provides motivation for achievement but that is only if there is a buy-in from all concerned in attaining it. Momentum is impetus gained by movement.
According to one of Newton’s Laws of motion, “a body at rest tends to remain so unless an external force acts on it”. In the same way, a body in motion also tends to be in motion unless acted upon by an external force. Every enterprise is a product of an idea put in motion. One of the greatest challenges of any venture is not starting off but being able to sustain the momentum that keeps it overcoming external forces that can cause inertia. For great leaders, passion is the fuel of momentum. Passion is infectious enthusiasm. To sustain momentum, the leader must also commit to the process. He must develop a staying power that basically says that no matter what happens, the only way to go is forward.
It is this evident commitment that makes the leader a model to the people he leads. Finally, in sustaining momentum, the leader must employ the law of differentiation. This entails being able to identify and project the organisation’s “coat of many colours” that makes it different from others engaged in similar pursuits. Every organisation must, like Zaccheus in the Bible, find its own sycamore tree that it can climb in order to get noticed above every competitor.
W. Chan Kim and Renee Mauborgne call it the “Blue Ocean Strategy” in their book of the same title. I will examine the subject of momentum in greater detail at a later date.
Great leaders are very adept at the discipline of affirmation. A leader who lacks confidence in himself should not be relied upon to inspire confidence in the people he leads. In Law and in life, the dictum holds true that no one can give what he does not have. To get others to move from complacency to performance, the strategic leader must learn to affirm himself as well as his team. Not only that, he must constantly affirm commitment to the process. The leader must never project the image of a slave-driver whose only concern is to get the job done without caring about the people involved in the process. At best, leaders who function that way may demand, but they never command compliance.
Someone has well said that a great leader is someone who tells his followers to go to hell in a way that actually makes them look forward to the trip! The leader must therefore never cut the picture of one who is always finding faults. It is ok for a leader to point out the faults of followers. However, it must never be done in a way that depreciates the follower’s value or deflates his self-esteem. As much as possible, a leader should rebuke infractions privately in a one on one encounter and compliment achievements openly in the presence of others in the team. As I have learnt recently from experience, I do not know of a better way to build loyalty in followership. When you make people feel good about themselves without necessarily flattering or unduly massaging their ego, the afterglow will positively affect everything around and about them. Productivity shoots up. Targets are not only met but often surpassed. Everyone is happy.
Strategic leaders are great ‘negotiators’. In time, we all negotiate for something.
Since life is a whole series of transactions, it follows that it is also a series of negotiations. Every action we take is a form of negotiation. Great negotiators however understand that nothing has been properly negotiated until all parties involved win. Contrary to popular opinion, the rat that wins the rat race still remains a rat at the end of the race. In negotiating your space in life, recognise that you are a player in the game of life as much as the person you are dealing with. The sun does not need your permission to shine. Neither does the rain need your opinion before it falls. Do not therefore think that anyone owes you anything. You win at negotiations because of a willingness to give up something to get something you consider more important. Compromise is only a crime when it makes a casualty of core values. If you win and everyone else loses, you are a tyrant, not a negotiator. In strategic negotiations, if you expect people to yield ground to you, you must also be willing to make them exit the table without a sense of loss… to be continued.
Remember, the sky is not your limit, God is!Share