Be an Intentional Leader

Leaders have to make tough decisions.  We have to respond, not react to situations because our instinctive reactions are often flawed due to incorrect data (even lies), emotions and personal bias (on our part and/or the part of others). 
We have to keep in mind that in America and much of the world today there are three common values:
1.  It’s all about me.  People are incredibly self-absorbed with an entitlement mentality that they have "rights" instead of opportunity.  Their decisions are not based on truth, but rather their feelings.  They shout for tolerance and equality, yet do not demonstrate the same for people of opposing views.
2.  It’s not my fault.  When something goes wrong some people feel it is never their fault.  They focus on the portion of the decision where they were right even though 98% of the problem was caused by how they were wrong.  These deadly three inward-focused values build upon one another, so when it is all about me then it cannot be my fault.
3.  It’s not my problem.  One of your employees is contacted by a client with a problem.  They immediately determine the problem was caused by someone else in the company.  They delay resolving the issue because it is not their problem, and pass off the situation to someone else.  The client correctly concludes your employees do not care about them as much as their other interests.
Do you want to be a leader?  Then reverse these values so your company culture is transformed.  In brief, consider:
1.  It’s all about you. Lead your employees by giving them structure, training, accountability and pay based on performance.  Serve them and your customers.  The result:  Work will become more fulfilling for everyone and your business will grow faster than ever.
2.  It’s my fault.  Take responsibility for your mistakes and the errors of your people.  Your team is comprised of humans who make mistakes.  Expect problems rather than be surprised by them.  The result:  Higher customer satisfaction through faster problem resolution.
3.  It’s my problem.  When something goes wrong for a client give your employees the authority to resolve it instantly.  Give your people authority that matches their responsibility and a commitment to keep customers happy. The result is higher profits because the cost of keeping a customer is less than the cost of losing a customer.  The same goes for your employees.
Our American political elections are approaching.  Let me use a politician as a positive example of responding rather than reacting to a challenge.  Governor Christie of New Jersey has pledged to turn around the state’s finances during his first and possibly only term.  Whether or not you agree with his politics, watch this video to see how he responds to a challenge, rather than reacts to it.  The governor is not perfect, but there is something for all leaders to learn from this example.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PkuTm-ON904&feature=player_embedded
NOTE:  Yes, we use politics and religion as examples in this blog/newsletter because if we avoid talking about politics and religion then the day will come when our freedoms will be compromised and we will lose our Constitutional rights to talk about politics and religion.  As a matter of fact, many believe those rights already have been taken away… 
ANOTHER NOTE:  These three common values are something I have defined on my own initiative with my mentors.  If you quote them, please reference this blog or newsletter.

Be an intentional leader.

Craig Sroda