Leadership Notes #72 – Leadership 2.0

(This series of “notes” first appeared in the YahooGroup “VenturingList” and are written by Michael Brown. I thought that they were worth sharing with the Commissioner Corps.)

“Leadership 2.0” (2012) is a new work on leadership by the authors of “Emotional Intelligence 2.0” (2009) (which I touched on in LN #58). Purchasing the book gives access to a limited version of 360 Refined, an on-line leadership self-test (which is why it’s important to purchase the book new, not used).

This concept of leadership is that there are 3 core leadership skill groups, which is what gets people into leadership positions, and then there are 4 groups of adaptive leadership skills, which are what set leaders apart and make you the leader you want to be. The book and the test help you understand where you stand with these skills. (note- there are others who use the term “adaptive leadership” for their own ideas on leadership. As far as I can tell, there is no connection with them and this work.)

The core leadership groups are Strategy, Action, and Results. Each of these have certain skills:

• Strategy: Vision, Acumen, Planning, Courage to Lead
• Action: Decision Making, Communication, Mobilizing Others
• Results: Risk Taking, Results Focus, Agility

The adaptive leadership groups are Emotional Intelligence, Organizational Justice, Character, and Development. Again, each of these have certain skills tied to each.

• Emotional Intelligence: Self-Awareness, Self-Management, Social Awareness, Relationship Management
• Organizational Justice: Decision Fairness, Information Sharing, Outcome Concern
• Character: Integrity, Credibility, Values Differences
• Development: Lifelong Learning, Developing Others

Many of the skills have been touched on by past Leadership Notes.

So let’s look at the core leadership groups and their skills.

Strategy is about being able to look ahead and come up with a course of action to be successful. Hence the skills here are:

• Vision- which is about inspiring the members of your group with what you see as the future for the organization. This has been touched on in a prior Leadership Notes.
• Acumen- is about the leader having an understanding the issues affect the organization. This is concept we’ve touched on in the past, but not as a separate concept.
• Planning- is about coming up with goals and a plan to achieve those goals. We’ve touched on goals in the past, and I hope to have a Leadership Notes on planning.
• Courage to Lead- is not something that is usually touched on. It means the leader must be strong in the face of issues and taking the risks for the group to succeed.

Nothing happens until it happens. A plan is meaningless, until sometime takes action on it. And sadly, the problem with many would-be leaders is not the lack of desire, but in how to execute. Hence the skills here are:

• Decision Making- leaders must make sound decisions, which includes getting multiple options, seeking input, and then making a decision in a timely fashion. Again, a topic of a past Leadership Notes.
• Communication- leaders need to operate in an open environment in which ideas and information flow freely. This increases the effectiveness of the group. Again, a topic of a past Leadership Notes.
• Mobilizing Others- leaders need to motivate and influence others. Leadership is influence, and without this the rest doesn’t get done.

Success is never a guarantee. Issues always emerge, so you need certain skills to ensure that results occur. Hence the skills here are:

• Risk Taking- a leader often times needs to push things and take risks to ensure success.
• Result Focus- always a leader must stay focused on the ultimate goal and to keep the organization focused there as well.
• Agility- things change, and the leader needs to be flexible and make changes as needed.

Now, as noted, the above core leadership groups & skills will get you into a leadership position, but to succeed as a leader, you need the adaptive leadership skills. It’s these that the authors feel sets apart great leaders from the rest.

Emotional Intelligence is the first group. This topic is more fully covered in the authors’ prior work “Emotional Intelligence 2.0”, and it’s something I recommend getting with this work. EQ is about being aware of your own emotions and the emotions of others, and using this awareness to manager yourself and form quality relationships with others.

• Self-Awareness is about being aware of your own emotions
• Self-Management is the next part, where you then need to be able to manage your emotions.
• Social Awareness is about being aware of other’s emotions and to understand them.
• Relationship Management is about using all of this to manage how you interact with others.

Organizational justice is about making sure that people are treated fairly, with respect and value. This is something that is important, but one I rarely see brought up in the context of leadership. For this, the leader needs these skills:

• Decision Fairness- making decisions that affect people in a fair manner. This is important in keeping the members of the group satisfied and involved. If they perceive unfairness, this can destroy the cohesiveness of the organization.
• Information Sharing- when decisions are made, members of the group must know how the decision was made and how it impacts them. Too often leaders want to hide this, which destroys group cohesion.
• Outcome Concern- leaders need to be truly concerned for the people they lead and be able to express that on a personal level.

Character is also often a topic that isn’t talked of too much in leadership (other than when its missing), but it’s something that anyone should have, leader or not. As a leader, there are certain characteristics you need, such as:

• Integrity- which is about having a core set of beliefs (ethics & values), and apply those values in how they conduct themselves. We in Scouting should be able to understand the concept of having a core set of beliefs.
• Credibility- means that the leader can be counted on, and that their actions and opinions are sounds. By doing so, they will gain the support and commitment of those they lead.
• Values Differences- those who values and makes use of the differences of their people can maximize their contributions and lead to better results.

Finally, another aspect of any leader is the attitude that one is always learning and developing themselves, and to ensure that those they lead are also developing (an element of mentorship which is in servant leadership). So the important skills here are:

• Lifelong Learning- as a leader, always be learning new skills and knowledge
• Developing Others- as a leader, ensure those you lead have opportunities to learn.

As noted, a big part of what makes this book useful is access to the “self-assessment” part of the “360 Refined” test. It’s not the full test (that costs a bit of money). The idea is that once you’ve run the self-assessment, you have an idea of where you are, come up with an action plan, and work on developing your skills.

Overall I think this is an interesting work and test. I think those who get it would also benefit from getting the authors’ prior work on Emotional Intelligence as well. I think it would be interesting to hear how others have put these to use.

The authors’ website is www.talentsmart.com, which has other resources.