Some speakers suggest that leadership is an end in itself. It's not. It's a means to an end - and that end is success. Success for individuals, successful teams, success for organizations and countries.
I've been a leader in the military, business world and the governmental world for over thirty five years. Most of that time was spent developing the performance of leaders. I've always thought that we were missing something in our organizations. I became global head of leadership at UBS and during that time we created a new global bank which resulted in amazing performance levels. Yet again I felt we were still missing something in terms of the potential we could unleash. So I decided to become a visiting professor of transformational leadership at Cass Business School in London. I looked at over 260 studies of what made leaders and their organizations truly successful.
When I started speaking (to well over 10000 leaders around the world) I would ask the leaders to raise their hand if they had previously ever listened to a speaker on the subject of leadership. All hands go up. I continue to ask were you able to go and be a much better leader because of this? Virtually no hands go up. Why? Leadership was presented in a way that was over complex and didn't seem relevant.
My road-map to leadership focuses on making sure that people care about the outcome. It's what I call "I care" leadership. Caring is delivered by the leaders in the room making their people care. The leaders in the room already know the answer because they already know what makes them care and drive super performance from their own experience.
Leaders are already doing these things from day to day. However they are being distracted from doing more of those things because organizations are not telling them what the potential benefits are. For example if you do these things you will potentially get 30 percent more effort from 60 percent of your people and it could put 10 to 20 percent on your bottom line for your organization. This is the simple and powerful answer.
My unique approach to talking about leadership unleashes the potential they have. The finance director of Vodafone once said to me "Chris this is a no brainer. This is a licence to print money". If you do these simple things that cost nothing, those things that you innately already know about you make people care about the outcome. The result will drive success.