Over the years of working as a leadership consultant with leaders from all types of organizations, there is no doubt that transformative leaders have something in common. Great leaders are only as strong as the support system they put into place around them.
Strong leaders have strong teams to support them
Great organizations don’t have ivory towers occupied by leadership. They understand the importance of taking a team approach and the risks associated with unilateral leadership. The leaders at the top of your organization cannot exist in a vacuum — isolation at the top can significantly hurt top level decision making and business strategy.
Strong leaders have strong support teams to assist them — not a team of yes men. Strong leadership teams are comprised of individuals who each have a unique voice, diverse skill sets and are not shy to challenge leaders. Two (or more) heads are always better than one, especially for making impactful business decisions.
Tips for choosing a leadership team
Having an inner circle of people who defer to what you ultimately think is right is short-sighted. You need to surround yourself with a strong team that will make you better as a leader.
Here are some tips to consider when choosing your leadership team:
- Recruit strong individuals
- Strength of character is more important than skills — you can teach skills
- Surround yourself with people who have a collection of diverse skills and experience — you need people who will be able to fill a variety of roles and take on different responsibilities
- Make sure that your leadership is firmly onboard with company culture and your vision
- Make sure they have confidence in their own opinions and viewpoints and are prepared to debate the issues based on the merits
- Watch for people who are too eager to join your inner circle –and seem too willing to adapt quickly to fit in — they may have ulterior motives
Once you have chosen your team members, your job is to align them toward a common goal. Utilize each member in the most effective way, employing their unique skills. Allow them to be active participants and voice their opinions, and watch them flourish.
Benefits of a strong leadership team
Leaders build strong leadership teams because of the multiple advantages and benefits they present. When you surround yourself with good people at the leadership level, your organization will be in a better situation to thrive and grow over time. Here are some of the benefits of a strong leadership team:
- You are able to address issues, strategies, and other business objectives from multiple perspectives allowing you to make better and more informed decisions
- Leaders do not have to shoulder the burden of having to do everything themselves — a support system is in place
- Great teamwork leads to better productivity, leading to more effective, efficient and successful business practices
- The leadership team can put out fires so you can focus on the bigger vision for the organization and not get bogged down with day to day tasks
- Your role can become less about execution and more about strategy and building the foundation for organizational success today and into the future
Transformative leaders have great support systems in place. Strong leadership teams make it easier for leaders to make the right decisions, improve organizational culture and have a more holistic view of the organization — all of which allows leaders to make the best decisions possible.