Leadership never operates in a vacuum. There are always leaders and then there are always leaders in the making. Companies operate and rely heavily on the wisdom, experience and tenacity that leaders bring to the table. And it doesn’t take rocket science to figure out that this trend must continue for the greater good of the company and all its employees. But spotting a candidate that is ‘leadership material’ and than investing and grooming him or her for such a role is easier said than done. This is primarily what Leadership Training are for – to train and equip managers in their respective departments with the right tools to help identify, assess and groom candidates that have the potential to be leaders in order to fill the void that their predecessors will someday leave. So what does this process look like? Here are three key questions that managers must ask themselves before they begin:
• Does the candidate have the essential competencies to be a leader? In other words, does he have what it takes? It is important that this potential candidate have not only the qualifications or knowledge but also the fundamental understanding of key concepts, facts and dynamics as they exist within the business.
• Does the candidate have the commitment to be a leader? While it may be true that they have great ambition or desire to be a leader, are they prepared to put in the hard work, perseverance and durability to not only survive through tough times but in fact thrive in it? Leaders need to have the ability to ‘weather the storm’ when the going gets tough. This is a foundational aspect of leadership skills training.
• Lastly does the candidate have the character to not only be a good leader but even a better leader? Do they have the principles and values necessary to help them lead their team or company with honesty and integrity? And will this character stay consistent during times of stress or challenge? Character is ultimately the foundation upon which the leader must stand. This is crucial to organizational leadership.
Leadership Programs are constantly in the process of fine-tuning individuals with the skills necessary to identify and develop talent. For more info on how this is done, please refer to the following article:What It Takes To Be A Successful Business Leader
Even as the world mourns the death of Robin Williams, I couldn’t help but think of my most favorite rendition of his – playing the Genie in Disney’s ‘Aladdin’. Genie’s introduction and intro song is sheer animation brilliance wrapped in vintage Williams. The bravado performance begins with a flashy song full of fire-works, multiple manifestations of Genie himself and colorful dancers. But it is more than just visual stimulation – along the way, Genie tells Aladdin that he is the boss, everything that Genie can do for him and simply how life can just change for the better for Aladdin. Well all this is nice and cartoony! But what in the name of ‘flying carpets’ does this have to do with Business Communication?
Like every other form of communication, effective communication skills lies in not simply transmitting information but in doing so in a persuasive manner. While some people resort to the KISS formula (Keep It Simple, Stupid), it sometimes pays to pull out all the stops and just go over the top to make a good impression. At the heart of this communication technique lies the intuitive knowledge that humans are emotional creatures and we often associate the memory of a product or service, not with the details or specs but with the emotions that we felt about it at the time. So what does this look like?
First Impression – Just like the Genie, we want a mind-blowing opener as a communication strategy. Anything that will grab the listener’s attention by the eye-balls! Colorful themes, special seating and theme music can all make for a memorable walk-in experience. Audiences are feeling good and looking forward to it before the show has even begun!
Know your audience – Genie knew that he had to dazzle in order to get the attention of an ordinary street boy like Aladdin. Customize your communication according to the caliber of the audience. Putting up a presentation for the advertising team will look entirely different from putting one up for the CEO and board of directors.
The human element – Genie, although a spiritual entity, appealed to everything human in order to attract Aladdin. At the end of the day, it is you giving the presentation and not your slideshow. Look confident, speak up and smiling alone will give you an edge that will carry you part of the way through your presentation. Communicating your idea powerfully and with clarity is more than sufficient to close the deal. This is communication skills 101.
For information on Communication Skill Training for companies, please refer to the following article – Why Communication Skills are the Epitome of Human Progress