Key 1. Leaders have their own people in agreement on concepts, principles, strategies and action. They eliminate ambiguities, vacuums and misconceptions.
Key 2. Leaders have a direct, face-to-face relationship with direct reports and others essential to their missions’ success. They build mutual trust.
Key 3. Leaders are known by their troops. They are out and about. They share themselves regularly and people know who they are. People believe in them, what they say and what they will do. They are consistently recruiting without selfishness. When they need employees, they just get them.
Key 4. Leaders have high energy, enthusiasm, passion and positive attitudes. They have confidence of those who must execute strategy. People know they will get the job done.
Key 5. Leaders take action, execute professionally, get opinions and seek input. Sometimes they take time to build consensus, but they act. They don’t delay, defer, procrastinate or run from the burden of responsibility.
Key 6. Leaders are paid to show up – they are just paid more to win. Job security secretly comes from the ability to produce activity in sales, employees and in recruiting.
Key 7. Their people know that a real leader “get it.” They talk about it with pride and enthusiasm. There is not a state of confusion or disorder. They follow up. They use the systems and have mastered the fundamentals.
Key 8. Leaders know their customers. They “think customer” in everything. They network customers. They are on a first name basis with their most important customers and can call on them when needed.
Key 9. Leaders network others, as appropriate. They can call on help when needed. They are known, respected and involved in whatever circles are appropriate for the job.
Key 10. Leaders treat folks right. They trust people. They are committed to servicing others, doing the right thing, admitting their mistakes and taking responsibility for their own actions. They have a will to win. They do W.E.I.T. (What ever it takes). They are never satisfied with anything less than the highest in excellence, quality and performance. They refuse to lose and don’t ever quit or offer excuses.
Key 11. Leaders are never arrogant, cocky or aloof because they know how hard it is and how necessary it is to have others support and encouragement.
Key 12. Leaders don’t throw rocks because they know they live in glass houses. They pull for others to succeed to do well, to be better than ever because they understand the value of teamwork. They know the result of working together is greater than the sum of all our individual efforts. They want to maximize all our efforts, not just to succeed personally. Leaders have their own act together, they are on top of their own agenda, they have their priorities straight. But they have an intense interest in the entire company’s agenda and in everyone else’s agenda and they are willing to constructively express their opinions openly.
Key 13. A leader’s work is his or her bond. They don’t lie, hedge, fudge or cover up because they know they live by integrity and confidence and they die when others doubt them.
Key 14. Leaders have an inner strength that allows them to overcome whatever comes their way, no matter how hard, stressful, unpleasant or unfair. They just persist, they keep on going.
Key 15. A leader is a leader. You can’t always explain it, but you can always recognize it. When a true leader is in charge, good things just happen. When a person fills a leadership slot that is not a leader, things just seem always out of whack.