Corona leadership/Do you make things happen or do you just make plans?

Corona crisis management has most certainly put your leadership to the test. Particularly in times of crisis, leaders can indulge in acting more as a manager, even though the balance between management and leadership can create faster change and more value.

So why not use the Corona situation to reflect on your own balance between your manager and leadership tasks? Maybe you need to adjust your approach right now, where you both must manage the crisis and lead the business towards a "new normal" on the other side of the crisis.

Inspiring leaders create more value

Good leadership is an untapped potential. An example of leadership research below shows that only 25% of managers are good leaders, half are “only managers” and 25% are bad supervisors. Two other studies reveal the challenge of leaders' mistaken self-perception of being inspirational. Thus, 77% of managers find themselves inspiring, while 82% of employees find their managers uninspiring. Recognizing that inspirational leadership correlates positively with commitment (+ 32%), satisfaction (+ 46%) and performance (+ 16%), then there will be reason to believe that better leadership can drive faster change, so your business gets ready to create value when the Corona dust settles.

 

Figure 1: Good leadership is an untapped potential

 

Leadership Potential UK

 

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Get a professional board with focus on both ”know-what” and ”know-how”

The employees create value through the customers, but skilled owner-managers nevertheless find it difficult to get the good plans to actually take place. They are often buried in daily hands-on chores. Here, an active and professional board with wide leadership experience can provide a competency allowance for redemption of employees' full potential - even at reasonable prices. 

 

Leadership Board Trend

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Private equity board trend shift from management to leadership?

Private equity governance has for years set the route for management professionalization with industrial advisors on their board teams. As any other business, they however also from time to time experience that even the best plans fail due to lack of execution skills for which leadership is key. Thus, a leadership advisor approach may be maturing as a supplement to their classical industry advisor approach – what do you think?

 

 Leadership Board Trend

 

Clear trend on board professionalization and competent teams

Private equity funds have long been at the forefront when it comes to professionalization and composition of board teams based on business challenges and competence needs, rather than classical networking relationships. With a typical exit horizon of 4-7 years and clear ambitions to maximize value creation during the ownership period, it has been natural to introduce new management paradigms from top to bottom of the management systems.

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“How” to actually make a blue ocean shift happen?

My own leadership experience tells me that management is about “What” and leadership about “How” - and that the ability to strike the right balance between the two is key to accelerate change and deliver top results. Thus, I am happy that the authors of the well-known book Blue Ocean Strategy, W. Chan Kim and Renée Mauborgne, have now also released the more dynamic Blue Ocean Shift – focusing on the transformational process of “how” to actually make it happen. 

 

Blue ocean skift 2

 

It’s an updated repetition of the blue ocean strategy elements wrapped in appreciated research on how some of the best companies have managed to succeed. I can only recommend that you read the full book your-self, but let me share a couple of appetizers spiced with my own reflections.

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The board ought to balance management and leadership

Results are created by the teams we lead, but many managers experience that it can be hard to make the great plans actually happen. As a corporate leader myself, I have experienced how you can be trapped in the treadmill of KPI-management and new plans, when the first plan hasn’t shown the expected results – thus, why I could not find adequate time to perform my leadership role. Whilst owner-managers typically aren’t burdened by corporate treadmills, they are up to their eyes in daily hands-on tasks and firefighting. In both cases an active board could play a decisive role in unfolding involving and value-adding leadership.

 

 

Numbers and People 2

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Leadership on Summer Vacation - opt-ins call for opt-outs

Opt-ins call for opt-outs - something to think about during your summer holidays

 

 

Wow, we are really flooded with new threats and opportunities that all must take a place on our busy agenda. Here's just a "small" sample of buzzwords in a sinful mix of abbreviations, which both leaders and employees need to address in a hectic everyday work life:

Generally

VUCA (Volatility, Uncertainty, Complexity and Ambiguity), Disruption, Exponential Business Models, GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation), LCI (Leadership Capital Index), CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) and Stakeholder Management.

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Finally, we can measure the value of good leaders

I simply have to share my excitement about a book on value-adding leadership, which I have just read. Now we can finally measure good leadership. Many have for years claimed that good leadership makes a significant impact on companies’ value creation. Dave Ulrich has with his book “The Leadership Capital Index” developed an operational method to measure the value of the leadership it-self. A book, which does not only give rise to reflections, but also actively can improve your leadership.

 

 

For years I have myself practiced and advised on the balance between the “what:s” of Management and the “how:s” of Leadership. Because, too many managers lack the experience or time to be a good manager and leader at the same time. Although I can document strong business results over time, I have always missed the intermediate value of the leadership it-self, which makes it much easier to repeat success.

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Leadmore® · Mads Middelboe
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