Recently, I have been working on a project with my friend, Mark Miller.
After writing his upcoming book, Chess Not Checkers, Mark decided to create a field guide to help leaders and organizations apply the concepts, and he asked me to help.
Over the next few weeks, I’ll periodically share excerpts from the field guide. Today the topic is the first move all High Performance Organizations make… they always Bet on Leadership.
Someone once said, “You can’t win them all if you don’t win the first one.” That simple statement is a reminder of the importance of getting off to a good start and is true in every arena of life. If you are charged with leading an organization, deciding where to start is one of the most critical decisions you will make.
You can start with an idea, dream, strategy, mission, talented team, or even an investment. Many are drawn to a place or driven by a cause, while others are motivated by profits or the opportunity to build something great. All those options are viable, and many will certainly prove relevant along your high performance journey. However, if you truly desire to reach your full potential as an organization, the first move you might want to consider is to Bet on Leadership. The greatest organizations in the world are well led.
The importance of leadership permeates all walks of life. Businesses, schools, sports teams, non-profit organizations, and governments all perform to the level of their leadership. If their leaders are great, they all thrive. If they are poorly led, they flounder in mediocrity. Yes, leadership matters.
As you think about your organization, where will you start the journey to high performance? You will be forced to place your bet. You can choose from the list above, or you can follow in the footsteps of countless High Performance Organizations and Teams, over centuries of time, and Bet on Leadership.
Be warned … betting on leadership does involve risk. That’s why it is a bet. Leaders are people, and people certainly have the potential to disappoint and even fail. However, without betting on leadership, your odds of achieving outstanding, sustained results are practically zero.
The key to betting on leadership is to make sure you have the right type of leaders in place … leaders who Set the Pace for the rest of the organization, who commit to Grow the Leadership Team, and who understand they must Build the Bench by creating a pipeline of emerging leaders. Those ideas will be the focus of our first three chapters and lay the foundation as you seek to build, or rebuild, your High Performance Organization.
Now, if you truly desire to create a winning organization, start with an initial move, a choice you and your team must make. Will you choose to Bet on Leadership?
It’s Your Move!
Leadership Begins at Home,
How important is leadership when it comes to organizational effectiveness?
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