#12 - What should a new leader do to establish his/her style and make an impact - without rocking the boat?
We had to take an unexpected break in our blog posting yesterday, but we are finishing our March series up today with a bang! For those of you unfamiliar with our March blog series, it's based on news that Jack Griffin, Time Inc.'s CEO, left his post after an extremely short 6-month stint. Our final response comes from Jim Kouzes, whom you know (along with co-author Barry Posner) from The Leadership Challenge. Even though this is our last series post of the month, we'd love to hear your take on the topic, which you can leave in the comments here and on Facebook and Twitter.
"Leadership is a relationship—a relationship between those who aspire to lead and those who choose to follow. And the foundation of that relationship, the bedrock upon which it is built, is personal credibility. If you don’t believe in the messenger, you won’t believe the message. One of the powerful lessons from the short tenure of Jack Griffin at Time is that a long and successful track record at one organization does not instantly translate into immediate credibility at a new one. That’s because the most important contributor to personal credibility—trustworthiness—can only be developed over time and through direct contact with those you’re going to lead. My guess is that in his haste to bring about some needed changes at Time, he relied too much on prior successes and not enough on building the relationships needed to support those changes. When you first join a new organization you have to make a conscious effort to answer the most fundamental questions people want to ask a new leader: Who are you? Where are we headed? What’s going to happen to me? And, Why should we follow you?"
Jim Kouzes is the coauthor with Barry Posner of the award-winning and best-selling The Leadership Challenge, and over a dozen other books on leadership including their most recent, The Truth About Leadership. They are also the developers of the world's bestselling off-the-shelf leadership assessment, The Leadership Practices Inventory. Jim is also the Dean's Executive Fellow of Leadership at the Leavey School of Business, Santa Clara University. Among his many awards and honors, The Wall Street Journal has cited Jim as one of the top twelve executive educators in the United States.
Visit the website of Jim and Barry's latest book, "The Truth About Leadership: The No Fads, Heart-of-the-Matter Facts You Need to Know": http://www.truthaboutleadership.com
Follow them on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/TruthAboutLeadership
And on Twitter: http://twitter.com/KouzesPosner
View a brief video discussion on Amazon.com: http://amzn.com/0470633549
Visit the website for all products: http://www.leadershipchallenge.com
View their online product brochure: http://lp.wileypub.com/TLCProduct/index.html
Read their blog at: http://leadershipchallenge.typepad.com
*Don't miss "Credibility: How Leaders Gain and Lose It, Why People Demand It" - available wherever books and ebooks are sold, Summer 2011!