Quotes from pamphlet:
“A proactive leader tells him, her self, “I always have a choice. I am responsible for my choices and decisions.
There are two kinds of people in most organizations
1. Stimulus-Response: Most people fall into this category, in which their lives are controlled by others. They become victims and defensive, blaming other for everything.
2. Stimulus-Belief System-Responsive: These people choose how to respond to the stimuli and control their own lives. They are victors, not victims. They influence the world.
(Company) leaders must be in the second category, determining their own destinies and helping others to do likewise.
If all employees, both management and labor, accept responsibility for their own actions and do not blame or accuse others, Covey says, the opportunities will be unlimited. Initiative, creativity, recommendations for improvement and acting on those recommendations will flow abundantly.
Leadership Behaviors Associated with Proactivity
- Responds and does not react.
- Behaves like a victor, not a victim (values-based, not feelings-based).
- Works to break down barriers between departments.
- Accepts responsibility for his/her own actions.
- Takes initiative and responsibility to make things happen.
- Behaves as a solution to problems, not problems themselves.
- Looks for alternatives to solve problems.
- Keeps commitments and promises.
- Works on things he/she can do something about.
- Develops him/herself first in order to have greater influence with others.”
This model never “sunk in” with the majority of managers in this company, and the reason was they did not see this model in the staff. Two examples; a young, extremely knowledgeable , and personable engineer worked under a staff member who made this engineer very frustrated, to the point that he resigned and went to work for a similar organization in Wisconsin. The other example is the extremely intelligent, hard working systems manager who suffered the same fate I did because he was “too aggressive” in finding alternatives to solve ongoing system problems.
Looking back at the 10 Behaviors listed above, those that were visibly missing in management were, well, all of them. They were replaced with pettiness due to the ineptness of the CEO.
But don’t be surprised. No doubt, some of you have the same reaction to your organization’s management. Today leadership has been replaced by pointing fingers, absence at work and absent in conversations, and in angry outbursts (as videotaped recently of a manager punching a female employee in the face), brown-nosing, and, well, you can add your experiences to the list.
Next: Leadership Behavior Model
Six Leadership Qualities