HomeBlogUncategorizedBe All That You Can Be — The First Step to Achieving Any Goal is to Assume Your Leadership Role.

Be All That You Can Be — The First Step to Achieving Any Goal is to Assume Your Leadership Role.

Have you ever attended an event that was unorganized?  The registration process was too complicated, the required steps were unnecessary or repetitive, communication was poor and information was missing, and the experience lacked timeliness? What you experienced is an example of poor execution.

Execution is the core of any endeavor and the backbone of every organization because it is what enables anything and everything to get done; from providing customers with products, services and a good experience, to collectively producing a sound, on time budget, to achieving new strategies and initiatives of all types.
Yet government leaders face extra challenges to execute successfully and are commonly believed to be ineffective in achieving their mission and delivering on promises.  

The good news is that execution is a discipline, and like other disciplines, execution can be learned and successfully performed if it is understood and applied consistently.

The key to effective execution is that each step must be understood and not skipped.  Shortcuts taken by busy executives and senior leaders are a common cause of poor execution.  The picture below illustrates the steps that must be taken to reach any goal and complete any initiative.

The FIRST STEP is to Assume Your Leadership Role.

Recognize and fulfill your role as a Leader – Leave your Ivory Tower and see what’s going on.

You as a leader are responsible for execution and its success, regardless of your title.  You will need to forget what “should” happen and take the action necessary to ensure what will happen.  Only by “putting the team on your back” can you make sure that units and people successfully fulfill their requirements properly. This role cannot be delegated to others.

Lead by Example—As the boss you are the ultimate trend setter.

Leaders set the tone for execution through their actions. By demonstrating a commitment to the organization’s goals and being willing to roll up their sleeves and get involved, when necessary, leaders embody the standards they expect others to meet. Their proactive approach inspires teams, proving that no one is above the work that drives success.  Recognize the impact that your actions and words have on every aspect of work culture.

Take the time to be successful—Is your busy calendar filled with the right stuff?

Executives and senior leadership allot less than half a day each year to review plans, people, strategy, and operations.  “Busyness” often gets in the way of successful execution.  Don’t let constant busyness prevent you from taking the proper time needed to be successful.  Much of the demand will still be there when you return your attention to it. Evaluate how you spend your time and why. 

Be curious – Don’t be a know-it-all, a cowboy, or an ostrich.

Leaders must be curious about the performance of their units and subordinates, instead of relying on how things have been done and assuming everything is fine.  Ask yourself, “Is my unit successfully performing its mission?  How do I know? Is my team performing well?  Why or why not?  Accept the discomfort of “not knowing” or feeling “not in control.”  Recognize that there may be things you don’t know and be curious about how to find out.  You are responsible for all of it.