Last month, we framed the first part of my leadership philosophy. Here is a summary of the first three tenets from last month’s blog:
1. Own your lane, and know your people’s lanes.
2. Have a servant attitude.
3. Have a vision for change and embrace change even when you didn’t have the vision.
Now let’s dig into and unpack the next tenet:
4. All-embracing communication: This is the most important leadership tenet, because if you are not effectively communicating, your people won’t have a clear picture of their lanes; they won’t see that you have a servant attitude; and they won’t buy into your vision.
You often hear of the “three Cs” in communication: candor, clarity, and comprehension. These are important, but it’s more than that.
• It’s controlling your responses when you lose your temper.
• It’s understanding email etiquette.
• It’s monitoring your body language.
• It’s understanding what people are telling you when you see contradictory verbal and nonverbal communication. (Most people would be surprised by the breakdown of communication mediums: people remember 7 percent of what you say, 38 percent of how you say it, and 55 percent of nonverbal communications.)
• It’s having “corporate courage”—a phrase that is thrown around in the business world, but is poorly executed.
• Without question, communication tops the list of priorities in being an effective leader. You can have the best ideas, the best people, and the best resources, but if you are not communicating effectively both vertically and horizontally, the team will fail.