7 Obstacles To Effective Leadership

March 30, 2012 | By | Add a Comment

In this week’s blog post, Duncan Brodie of Goals and Achievements, shares his thoughts on the obstacles leaders can face. You can find out more at his excellent blog at goalsandachievements.com

As a leader you are judged on your ability to deliver results.  While at times this might seem tough and unfair, at the end of the day it is results that matter.  In theory delivering results is simple but in practice can be more difficult.  So what are 7 obstacles you need to address to deliver results and be an effective leader?

Obstacle 1: Old Mindsets

This might not be the thing that you would automatically expect to see at the top of the list.  Truth is that when we become a leader it is easy to forget that there are different expectations and challenges.  If as a new leader you are still in the manager mindset you are going to struggle.  Even if you are not a new leader old mindsets and complacency can be an obstacle.

Obstacle 2: Personal rather than Corporate Agenda

Ever noticed how someone’s leadership career evolves.  At the start they are a breath of fresh air, full of new ideas and enthusiasm, after a while, especially if the going gets tough, they start to focus on their own survival rather than on delivering success.  Be alert to becoming too focussed on your personal agenda.

Obstacle 3: Vagueness about Direction

As the leader people will look to you to provide clear direction.  After all unless you have a clear direction in which you want to take the organisation or team forward in, how are you going to communicate it and get the support you need.

Obstacle 4: Micromanaging Everything

One of the areas that differentiates the best from the poorer leaders is their ability to let go of things.  When a leader spends all of their time micromanaging everything they get lost in the detail of the day to day stuff and lose sight of the bigger picture.

Obstacle 5: Failure to Act

We have all probably encountered this situation at some point in our career.  The organisation is facing some struggles, needs to take some decisions and most importantly act on them.  Yes it takes courage but failure to act is a recipe for disaster in the long term.

Obstacle 6: Having to be Right

Of course it is great to be the person who comes up with the ideas, turnaround or transformation plan or initiative.  On the other hand when this becomes essential to you as the leader you stop listening, taking ideas on board and potentially miss out on real opportunities.

Obstacle 7: Failing to Adapt

Every situation requires a different response.  Failing to adapt leads to a situation where you become stuck.   In the worst case scenarios this failure to adapt can result in a whole organisation collapsing. Always be ready to adapt to new and changing circumstances.

Bottom Line – Obstacles are an inevitable part of leading.  The question is are you going to successfully deal with them and deliver great results?

Duncan Brodie is a leadership and management expert who can help you and your people achieve extraordinary success. Check his website out at www.goalsandachievements.co.uk

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