Saturday, January 28, 2012

Average to Super.

Leaders must evolve before their teams can improve.

Leaders serve as the limit of potential for their organizations.  They create and limit possibility.

Leaders can evolve until their final moment on earth if:

1)  They are self aware....
2)  Are committed to something beyond themselves...
3)  Are willing to learn...
4)  Are willing to face themselves on a continuous basis...
5)  They are accountable for the results they cause...
6)  Are willing to do the tough work...
7)  Never quit...

I heard a couple of quotes this week which were examples of leaders that evolved so their teams could improve.

Coach Tom Coughlin -  His team was fighting to make the playoffs eight weeks ago.  Next Sunday -Coughlin will coach the New York Giants in the NFL Super Bowl.  An ESPN reporter asked Coughlin what changed in his team.  Coughlin answered:

"The environment changed.  The harmony on the team changed.  The cooperation between the players and coaches changed.  We were able to focus on and off the field in a different way to take advantage of our team's talent."

This is an example of organizational alignment.  Organizational alignment is made possible by the leader.  In this case, Coughlin did not waiver from his task of creating an environment for success when his team was producing average results.  He found a way to change the environment and change his team's results.  Coughlin had to change who he was being and what he was doing to make that change possible for his team.  Leaders change first than others follow.


I heard another interesting quote by Amani Toomer regarding his ex-teammate Eli Manning.  Manning is the Quarterback of the New York Giants and his reputation as a leader has been questioned at times by the rabid New York media in comparison to his iconic brother Payton.  But Eli has evolved as a leader and his teammates believe in him and understand his style at this point in his career.  When questioned about Manning's leadership Toomer responded.

"He's tougher than people think.  He's not soft.  He's worked hard from day one in the NFL - not many first round draft picks do that - especially if they get a $20 million dollar bonus.  Eli never showed off; he went to work and has never stopped trying to get better.  He works at his craft.  The guys believe in him because he works hard and he never gets rattled.  That's hard in the NFL and that's hard in New York but Eli has the ability to focus on the task at hand.  He can block out all the distractions and get the job done.  The guys respect that about him."

Manning has never stopped evolving as a leader or a quarterback; his work has translated to positive results for himself and his team.  A team is transformed when the leader's character and work ethic is respected and admired.
   

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