Leadership Series 1 – Are You Right or Are You Just Being Stubborn? Part 1

Right or Stubborn

“It takes bravery to recognize where in your life you are your own poison…it takes courage to do something about it” ~ Steve Maraboli.

Have you ever wondered why some leaders and individuals make mistakes over and over again even when it is clear to you that they could have averted it? It’s basically because of the “I can’t be wrong” syndrome. And if you’ve had that mindset before now, it’s time to change it because truthfully, it will only get you frustrated.

I have been privileged to work directly with a good deal of leaders at different times and for different purposes, one of the basic factors that determine how much a leader can achieve is his or her ability to truthfully and objectively ascertain the impacts of his or her decisions, actions, and words on the group or team. If you cannot truthfully ascertain how the words you said yesterday in the team meeting is directly or indirectly affecting the team’s performance as a leader, then you cannot be sure of a favorable outcome because this will determine how much they are ready to run with whatever vision or dream you’ve laid out before them.

One of the best way to do this is to listen to what your team players have to say even after the decision has been made. This does not necessarily mean that everything everyone has to say is right, but it gives you the opportunity to hear how they understand the decision you’ve made.

John C. Maxwell in his book, the 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership while describing the law of navigation puts it this way:

“Good navigators listen to what others have to say. They recognize that they don’t have all the answers. They gather information from many sources”.

If you are able to do this very well, you will find out if you had actually made the right decisions or have drawn the wrong conclusions. This is so because there are times that some team members will tell you directly that they don’t think that decision is appropriate or workable but there will be other times that they are not up for long arguments. Whichever, the basic thing is to always find out if you’ve made the right judgement call or not and if you have actually convinced and won your team over on that decision.

Always bear in mind that the fact that you have said it does not make it correct and always be ready to retrace your steps once you ascertain that it wasn’t the best decision you could have made because mistakes are easy to correct at the beginning than when it has been allowed to run wild, you really don’t want that.

Owning up early enough when you are wrong would save you and your team or business/organizations a good deal of time and resources that might have been wasted if you had continued.

“You can always correct your course, but the sooner you are aware that you are off your path, the better and more satisfying your journey will be” ~ Hicks E & J

So, go find out if you’ve done well or if there are things that have not gone well, it could be the best time to fix it.

Wishing you a productive week ahead.

I honour you!

Nicholas Akomire
Twitter: @ItsNicholasAE, Google+: +NicholasAkomire

Leadership Series 1 – Are You Right or Are You Just Being Stubborn? Part 2

Right or Stubborn?

“We all make mistakes, have struggles, and even regret things in our past. But you are not your mistakes, you are not your struggles, and you are here NOW with the power of to shape your day and your future” ~ Steve Maraboli

Have you ever noticed how when you wash a dish shortly after using it it’s MUCH easier to clean than if you stick it in the sink then let it sit for a while? Same thing with our mistakes.

When you have done your asking as described in part 1 of this series and have gotten the needed feedbacks the next thing is to ask yourself the following questions: What was I hoping to achieve with this decision? Did I make it out of anger or it was well thought out? Is it really for the greater good of the team or just for the good of a few? Has the outcome so far been what I expected? Did I make the right efforts at communicating it clearly enough?

Asking these questions would help you stand back and reassess the decision you have made. It gives you the ability to be your own critique.

“Have you had a failure or rejection? You could get bitter. That’s one way to deal with it. Or…you could just get BETTER. What do you think?” Destiny Booze.

The objective should be to get better with the decision that has been made and not to get bitter or to find enemies, the focus is the growth of the team which I believe is the reason why you made the decision in the first place.

A lot of thinking would follow and like Joyce Meyer said “

Discipline enables you to think first and act second”.

When you are done thinking and analyzing all the feedbacks and answering all your questions, you are set for the next step…Reframe. We would cover this tomorrow.

But most importantly, do not let the decision sit in the sink for too long if you are certain it needs cleaning, be more aware and correct course ASAP.

Leadership Series 1 – Are You Right or Are You Just Being Stubborn? Part 3

Win Win

At one point or the other in every leader’s life, they will be faced with this decision and acceptance challenge, what will matter in the end of the day is how they choose to address it.
The best way to get out of such challenge and get your team together again working in synchronized rhythm with you is to ‘reframe’. The American author and lecturer, Marianne Williamson describes it this way:

“Our key to transforming anything lies in our ability to reframe it”.

Reframing gives you the ability to turn an ugly situation into something good. It leads to a win-win experience most of the time. Reframing does not necessarily mean you were totally wrong with that decision, the issue could have been that you did not communicate it clearly enough so your team didn’t get to see the picture as you did. Don’t feel bad that you have to reframe, just remind yourself that it is okay not to be perfect.
Bringing everybody together and asking team members input is a great way to reframe. You will be surprised to find out that the original idea may only end up being modified just a little bit but not thrown out the window.
In achieving this, international author and speaker, Chris Dorris suggests the conflict approach. He says:

“The word conflict actually originally meant “to struggle together with”. The best leaders create a culture that supports disagreement. It leads to creativity. The New School definition of “conflict” is: coming together to experience our disagreements so as to activate creative genius and inspire innovative ideas and solution”.

When everyone has thrown their thoughts to the table on the decision, the best ideas or modifications will come out and thereafter, everyone will be ready to run with it even if was not their suggested modifications but because they had an input.
Your job in the discussion would be to balance the faith and the facts. John C. Maxwell in his book the 21 Irrefutable laws of leadership describes it this way:

“Good navigators also make sure their conclusions represent both faith and fact. They have faith that they can take their people all the way. But they also face facts realistically. They balance optimism and realism”.

Once you are able to do this and show your team the pros and cons, you are good to go and believe me, they will be ready to run with you all the way with that decision because you will be able to get their buy in.
And in the end of the day, you come out a better leader than you were, this is because “a mind that is stretched by a new experience can never go back to its old dimension”.
So go get your team together and reframe.

I would love to hear your thoughts on this matter and maybe a personal experience, please do add them in the comment session below.

Have a wonderful day.

I honour you.

Nicholas Akomire

Twitter: @ItsNicholasAE, Google+: +NicholasAkomire


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