The 4 Major Leadership Mistakes that Most Business Owners Make (Part 2 of 4)

by Dale Henry

We’re now to number 2 of what we’ve found as the 4 major mistakes that business owners, or senior leadership teams of larger companies, make on a regular basis that limits the performance of the organization.

The second major mistake: Thinking leadership is a ‘fail/pass’ proposition.

What I mean by this is thinking that as long as you aren’t getting complaints (or not too many or too often) about a leader than there’s nothing to worry about or work on. Well that’s not actually true. Regarding leadership, ‘not bad’ is not good; ‘okay’ rarely is; and going from good to great makes all the difference in the world. Why?

Most of us would probably agree that bad leaders don’t get the best from their teams. In fact they probably get the minimum amount of effort and performance, right? Well John Maxwell, the world’s #1 leadership expert, believes that 90% of leaders are ‘positional’ leaders – those that depend upon their position or title for authority and influence. Furthermore, he’s found that those leaders also get the least amount of effort (and therefore results) from their people. So a leader being ‘not bad’ is not only not ‘good’, performance-wise there is little difference between being ‘bad’ and ‘not bad’.

So as top leaders of an organization, we need to realize that having ‘good enough’ leaders isn’t an acceptable answer to get the best performance from our people. ‘Good enough’ really isn’t good enough.

Great Leaders Required

We don’t get great performance, or have great teams, without great leaders. It just doesn’t happen. So we should focus there. We need to realize that without great leaders the vast majority of the potential – the potential or possible performance – of our people remains completely untapped.

To get the best performance from our people, and our teams, we need to have, and develop, the best possible leaders we can throughout our organizations.

Strategy and vision may come from the top down, but performance and growth happen from the middle out.

The leaders in the middle of our organizations – those that architect and orchestra the execution of strategy (or in other words, generally run the business) – need to be strong, effective, truly influential leaders who know exactly how to build high-performing teams.

We shouldn’t settle for anything less. We’re already paying 100% of the cost of having our people come to work. We should really make sure they have the best leaders possible encouraging them to do and become their best so that our organizations can perform at their very best.

Question: Are you settling for less than you should regarding the leaders within your organization?