5 Leadership Decisions to Make This Your Best Year of Leadership

5 Leadership Decisions to Make This Your Best Year of Leadership 

This time of year, there is a great deal of focus on business/leadership and organizational planning for the new year.  In 2020, this planning is not only important, it is critical.  2020 could bring unprecedented challenges for leaders and organizations, both in an increased need for services but also in a fight for the best available talent to build your team.  Leaders must be prepared for this scenario and have a plan in place to succeed where others may fail. 

A few years ago, there was a Fortune 500 company with 16,000 employees and locations all over the world.  Today, it does not exist.  The one thing that caused its demise is also the one thing that could have turned it around:  leadership decisions. 

As you look forward to 2020, apply some tried and true principles to your decision making.  Properly applied, these principles will guide your organization to a successful new year. 

  1. Build and Battle. This was a big factor for the aforementioned Fortune 500 company.  They had spent years working to be the biggest – to build – but had not spent equal time on the battle side of the equation.  This includes things like cutting expenses and doing preventive maintenance on facilities and developing the team and employees.  This underscores the importance of the Law of Navigation where John Maxwell points out that anyone can steer the ship, but it takes a leader to chart the course.  A good leader needs a strategic battle plan and a strategic building plan.  For any organization, the elements of building and battling are equally essential.  You need strong growers in place for marketing, and you need strong fighters in place for managing.  Be sure you have both.
  2. Blame versus Responsibility. When this company was finally forced to file bankruptcy, the leadership blamed circumstances – the economy, the high cost of goods, even 9-11.  The fact is, other companies in similar industries survived despite these circumstances.  It has been said that “everything rises and falls on leadership”.  Bottom line – this was a leadership issue, not a circumstances issue. 
  3. Proactive versus Reactive. Many organizations live in firefighting mode.  A business cannot survive long-term in reaction mode.  Success does not just happen – you must apply the Law of Intentionality in order to thrive.   While most people live day by day, a leader must be looking 90 days ahead, a year ahead, a decade ahead.  Anything less results in a business operating in survival mode.  In tough economic times, or in surging growth times you cannot afford to operate with such tight margins. 
  4. Divide and Conquer. This concept is key to planning.  One person cannot do it all.  The most important job of an organizational leader is not to do all the work.  His or her job is to build a team of gifted individuals to do the work in a way that one person alone could not do.  Failing to follow the Law of Design means that someone else will design the plan for your business, and that plan may not align with your purpose and values.
  5. Give and Take. This was a factor for the Fortune 500 company as well.  It is a common malady, where the leaders live in “take” mode – “what’s in it for me?”  This is not healthy for the organization.  A leader must ensure that the organization is profitable (and thus will be rewarded), but s/he must also be generous in his dealings with employees, volunteers, and clients.  

While no one knows for sure what a new year brings, one thing is certain:  leadership decisions can make a difference. 

If we can help you build a plan for creating momentum and experiencing the Law of Explosive Growth in 2020 and beyond, please contact us.

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