blogging about DIRECT LEADERSHIP

Do you have a Leadership Operating System?

with one comment

These past three weeks I have been on the road.

Two weeks ago I was speaking in Mexico City and Orlando, Florida about Direct Leadership. Last week I spent in discussions with colleagues who all work with The Human Element. And this week I am accompanying Jim Tamm in a speaking tour about his Radical Collaboration model for several different groups in Copenhagen.

All of this time I have spent in different settings, but all the time discussing my passion, i.e. how to improve our world’s workplaces through creating solid everyday leadership and company cultures which leaders and employees alike may take pride and pleasure in aligning with.

As the weeks have unfolded, more and more I have been convinced of the need for what I have begun to think about as a leadership operating system.

All leaders need to understand the organisation’s as well as their own particular context. What is the nature of the organization? The market it operates in? Who are the organisation’s stakeholders? Is there more than one bottom line? What is the organisation’s vision? It’s strategic goals? What is my department’s position in the organizational food chain?

Another thing is to have a solid grip on their values. On the one hand, the values of the organization that serve as guidelines for how the organization want to conduct their business. On the other hand, the personal values, which will determine if your staff perceives you as the kind of leader they would voluntarily select to follow or just their formal superior.

Thirdly, anyone with leadership responsibilities need what I call people skills. By this term I also refer to two things. Understanding what generally motivates people and what doesn’t – and understanding yourself and your own preferences when it comes to relating to others.

Lastly, you want to understand the leadership deliverables, the content of your role and the main leadership styles, which you should be able to apply according to what you intend to achieve with your staff.

With all four components of the leadership operating system in place, your organisation is well-suited to exercise coordinated leadership in the short as well as long term.

Without one or more of them you as an individual and the organization you work in are less likely to be effective.


Written by Karin Zastrow

June 9, 2011 at 10:42

One Response

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  1. […] a comment » In my last blog post I shared my musings about the need for a leadership operating system, which followed a series of meetings with colleagues around the […]


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