People Need Leadership
Is it just me or does anyone else agree that in recent times have the leaders of organisations lost their power? In the last few months I’ve worked with a Chairman who was intent on setting up committees for everything and empowering those committees to make decisions. I worked with the CEO and CFO of a law firm who, after several meetings, were unable to make a decision and deferred it to a committee. More recently a CEO briefed me on a job we were setting up a conference when he decided he couldn’t make the decision and referred it back to a committee.
In the movie The American President, Michael J Fox’s character said to Michael Douglas who was playing the president of the USA, “People want leadership, Mr President, and in the absence of genuine leadership, they’ll listen to the first person who steps up to the microphone.” Sadly today, I think CEOs, MDs or Chairmen of organisations don’t have either the courage or the power to make decisions.
Yet any super successful organisation has had a powerful leader who’s been able to make the hard calls, set the dream, pave the direction, inspire people and lead from the front. It doesn’t matter if you’re a one off operator, or you lead a team of one, two, 800 or 1000, just understand that people and businesses need strong leaders. If you need the how-to steps, pull out the great autobiographies of past leaders, right back to Abraham Lincoln, Churchill or Mandela and know that these people made the tough calls and led fearlessly from the front. In my experience committees are just a way to put off the hard calls and inevitably lead to inertia.
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