Those who aspire to become successful global leaders will need to shift their focus. Leadership is no longer the domain of those who forge ahead without care for the consequences but rather those who are willing to forego self-interest, make significant personal sacrifices and openly serve others.
Leaders will need to change from being a strategist to a visionary, from commander to a storyteller, and from systems architect to an agent of change.
To lead one must have a willing source of followers who are inspired to commit to the implementation of a collective vision.
The leader is responsible for the guiding vision and the strength to persist in the face of setbacks and failures. They have a passion for what they do and a level of integrity obtained from their maturity. They have a good understanding of their strengths and weaknesses and invoke others to adopt their chosen vision.
Not only do leader's earn trust; they actively exercise that trust that in their followers. Their curiosity is only outweighed by their daring nature and willingness to take risks.
Leadership is not to be confused with good management. While their roles form an integral part of any successful organisation their function are poles apart:
|Do things right||Do the right things|
|Are interested in efficiency||Are interested in effectiveness|
|Focus on systems and structure||Focus on people|
|Rely on control||Rely on trust|
|Organise||Align people with a direction|
|Emphasise tactics, structure and systems||Emphasise philosophy, core values, and shared goals|
|Have a short term view||Have a long term view|
|Ask how and when||Ask what and why|
|Accepts the status quo||Challenges the status quo|
|Focus on the present||Focus on the future|
|Have their eyes on the bottom line||Have their eyes on the horizon|
|Develop detailed steps and timelines||Develop visions and strategies|
|Seek predictability and order||Seek change|
|Avoid risks||Take risks|
|Motivate people to comply with standards||Inspire people to change|
|Use superior-to-subordinate influence||Use person-to-person influence|
|Requires others to comply||Inspire others to follow|
|Operate within organisational rules||Operate outside of organisational rules, regulations|
|Regulations & procedures||Policies & procedures|
|Are given a position||Take initiative to lead|
A true leader will ask how they can help the follower. How might I be of help? What is it you need from me? What resources do I have that would be of use?
They understand what ought to be done, they believe these are the right things to do and they take the necessary actions without instruction.
This is the shift that lies ahead for ICMCI and the new role of EXCOM – now that we have a professional Executive Director and Secretariat service. EXCOM now has the chance to move into true leadership for ICMCI, to set the strategic direction and to serve the IMCs and CMCs globally, to unite us under one vision, one purpose and a clear outline of financial sustainability for ICMCI.
I hope you enjoy reading this first edition of CMC Today and the topic of global leadership.
Tim Millar, CMC, Chair, ICMCI