by Dr. Mary M. Gillam
Have you ever worked in an organization in which the leader’s vision was unclear? Although there was a designated boss, the role appeared to be in name only. There was no consistency in the message. Organizational priorities, goals, and objectives changed continuously. The organization was existing; yet, in chaos.
No organization destined for greatness will survive without a vision. The old adage, “If you don’t know where you are going, any road will get you there” is not conducive to running a successful business.
Effective leaders are vision architects who understand that in order to build team congruency, there must be a shared vision.
So, why is the leader’s vision important? Without a vision, employees are frustrated due to the lack of guidance and direction. They are starving for leadership. Their bodies report to work daily; yet their hearts are adrift elsewhere. Buy-in has not been achieved.
When there is a lack of organization congruency among the leader and the team, there is no shared vision. Likewise, there is no sense of strategic alignment. It does not take a multitude of research to discover that this is a recipe for business disaster.
How can a leader build team congruency? Here are three recommendations.
1. Effective leaders are vision-builders. These leaders go beyond establishing the vision. In essence, they are vision architects. They strive to make the vision “plain.” With each leadership stone such as character, integrity, ethics, honesty, wisdom, etc., they build an organization that is “team-centric” and not “I-centric.” Success demands that the team understands where the leader wants to take the organization. The team should not be left speculating about the leader’s intentions. Consistency in purpose and open communications should prevail.
2. Effective leaders are investors. They invest time in creating the vision and communicating its attributes and parameters to the team. These leaders see beyond the present situation. They are the generals who possess the strategic game plan for where the organization is going in the future. With hard work, commitment, and dedication, their goal is to build a team that will outlast them.
3. Effective leaders are transparent decision-makers and self-motivators. They are hard-chargers, but focused in their activities. These leaders understand what is required to move the organization forward. Although their personality can differ, they are primarily charismatic and inspiring. Their passion for success is contagious.
In summary, effective leaders maximize their opportunities to grow and develop their teams. In propelling the organization forward, they establish a clear and compelling vision. They communicate its purpose. Finally, they empower the people to make the vision a reality.
About the author
Dr. Mary M. Gillam is the owner of Executive Leadership Enterprise & Management Services located in the Washington DC metropolitan area. She is a retired Air Force Colonel and former member of the Senior Executive Service Corps with the Department of Defense at the Pentagon. She is the host of a local television show, Leadership Table Talk, and the inventor of the board game, The Leadership Build Zone. An Amazon #1 best-selling author, she is also the creator of the C.O.R.E Leadership Development Model. Her website is http://www.executiveleadershipbiz.com.