A mentality that “the buck stops here” creates a culture of accountability. The first thing leaders need to accept is that everything that happens within the organization under a leader’s direction—whether it be good or bad—is a result of something that leader has or hasn’t done. Period.
When a leader takes complete accountability, suddenly others learn to take accountability. Accountability is contagious.
Leaders are accountable for knowing that they can influence everything.
Most people have an honest desire to do what they do well and they deserve the opportunity to do it. That’s what empowerment means: surrendering the authority to let others make decisions.
In order to be able to empower people, you must be extremely clear and explicit about outcomes and check in with people often as they work through their process. This ensures that they are on track, especially the first several times a person is attempting a new task or project.
Your number one priority is coaching your people to perform at a higher level. That doesn’t just mean coaching low performers, but also coaching the average and high performers to continually elevate the quantity and quality of their work.
Plan regular coaching sessions where you actually leave a form with them; that is, a project plan of something that they will be doing differently or that will be improved. The plan is thus made crystal clear. Check in with them often to make sure that they are on track to fix the areas of weakness on which they have been coached.
- Sales Meetings
It is imperative that you hold a sales meeting EVERY week. Further, this meeting should be scheduled on the same day and at the same time. Managers should NOT pass on it when they are busy with other things. Doing so sets a tone of unimportance. Managers should set the tone to be positive, powerful, and solution-oriented in terms of what your team can accomplish with customers.
- No Excuses
Foster an environment where no excuses are allowed. Instead, what you want to hear is “I blew it. Here is what I’m doing to change so that this doesn’t happen again.”
Last week we discussed the difference between leadership and management. Below are five specific best practices utilized by high-performing leaders within the industry.