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Tony Guthrie
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Tony Guthrie   My Press Releases

Leadership Savvy

Published on 6/28/2016
For additional information  Click Here

Each of us have met or encountered people who possess what I like to call "leadership savvy." You know the type. They have a shrewdness or instinctive knowledge when it comes to business. They understand the game of business and know how to make effective decisions. At first thought the word "savvy" may feel somewhat negative. One may say directly, "she's so savvy!" But that is merely an intuitive observation. The word, regardless of how it feels to us, actually connotes something stronger and positive. If you or I possess savvy, we are in a good place. In this article I want to address three aspects of leadership savvy.

Leadership Savvy: Conviction

leadership savvy

One of the underlying foundation stones of leadership is the conviction that one is doing something of great significance. In the corporate world, many so-called "leaders" were merely hired after sending out a wave of resumes. But this approach only gets one a job, not necessarily a place to really connect with the company goals and objectives.

But those who have found a place in which they truly believe in why the company exists are in a position to grow and lead. It is easy to understand why they literally throw themselves into the business. No, they are not workaholics, they simply possess a conviction that others do not. They are inspiring, fun to work with, and motivating. It is easy for them to make decisions and possess "savvy" because they see themselves literally as a part of the firm, not merely an employee. Perhaps the following questions should be considered:

  • Do you really believe in what your company stands for?
  • Do you see yourself as an integral part (non-expendable) of the business and it's opportunity?
  • Do you see your current company as making a real and significant contribution to its clientele?
  • Do you see the problems that arise as burdensome woes or interesting challenges?
  • Are thoughts of greener pastures the norm for you?

Leadership Savvy: Concern

The savvy leader knows that he or she does not make things happen or get significant things done alone. He or she realizes that it literally takes a team of dedicated and committed players to see necessary results. So, in my estimation, the leader assumes the role, at least to some degree, of a head coach when it comes to the team. He or she knows the players. While it is not necessary to know all the details of a player's personal life, enough interest should be shown to possess a natural feel for them. Life and work sometimes combine into challenging scenarios for people. Concerned leaders know how to reveal compassion when these times arise. If a team player's work begins to gravitate downward it may be time to simply ask if all is well. Rather than a dictatorial rebuke, perhaps asking them to "share" is the better approach. Listening is a FAR greater skill than correcting. I remember hearing Rita Davenport once say:

"People will work harder for a praise than they will for a raise."

leadership savvy

So here are a few questions to consider:

  • Do you see your recruits as usable underlings or critical contributors?
  • Do you see the things they aren't doing right or are you looking at their strengths and helping them devise ways to build upon them?
  • Are you better with correcting or listening?
  • Do you honestly care about the people on your team?

Remember, the savvy leader will always show appreciation for those with whom they work.

Leadership Savvy: Consistency

You have probably heard the expression, "the more things change, the more they stay the same." At first it seems a tad oxymoronic. But when it comes to leadership no more appropriate expression exists. What I am referring to is the fact that things do change in a company or a firm. Outside factors, more than anything else, contribute to this reality. But the savvy leader never wavers in the face of challenge or change. He or she will be strong, focused, dedicated, and in control. In other words, he or she will remain as always: consistent. The attribute of consistency is not natural or inborn. It must be developed. This happens with time, experience, determination, and learned leadership skills. A few questions may aid in self-analysis:

  • When outside factors that impact business direction or productivity occur, how do you react? Worried, or do you move into a true leadership role?
  • Is your approach to leadership the same regardless of the daily, weekly, or quarterly occurrences in the company?
  • Do subordinates see your unwavering consistency?
  • Do you feel "in control" no matter what the day brings?

Leadership Savvy Conclusion

If one says of you that you possess leadership savvy, you have truly been complimented. I have been privileged to work with a few people over the years that truly possess this attribute. They knew their stuff, loved the direction and purpose of the company, showed concern for the team, and always remained consistently in control. I hope this article has been helpful.

The best!

Tony Guthrie, Ph.D.

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