Leaders inspire and enable others to do their absolute best together to realize a meaningful and rewarding shared purpose. Great leaders add bringing out others’ self-confidence by emphasizing confidence-building in their approach to the direction, authority, resource, and accountability aspects of delegation.
“They can because they think they can.” – Virgil
Think in terms of why people follow you, what you do, and how you help those following you.
Why people follow leaders – John Maxwell in “The 5 Levels of Leadership”
5 – PINNACLE – Respect – Who you are and what you represent.
4 – PEOPLE DEVELOPMENT – Reproduction – What you have done for them.
3 – PRODUCTION – Results – What you have done for the organization.
2 – PERMISSION – Relationships – They want to.
1 – POSITION – Rights – They have to.
What leaders do – Jim Collins in “Good to Great”
5 – EXECUTIVE – Builds enduring greatness through a paradoxical combination of personal humility plus professional will.
4 – EFFECTIVE Leader – Catalyzes commitment to and vigorous pursuit of a clear and compelling vision; stimulates the group to high performance standards.
3 – COMPETENT Manager – Organizes people and resources toward the effective and efficient pursuit of predetermined objectives.
2 – CONTRIBUTING Team Member – Contributes to the achievement of group objectives; works effectively with others in a group setting.
1 – Highly CAPABLE Individual – Makes productive contributions through talent, knowledge, skills, and good work habits.
How leaders help/what they bring out in their followers:
5 – EVOLVE – The self-confidence to evolve themselves, colleagues, and organization.
4 – EXCEL – The drive to excel.
3 – DELIVER – The motivation to deliver results.
2 – CONTRIBUTE – An interest in contributing to the group or team.
1 – COMPLY – A willingness to comply with what is clear, consistent and fair.
Bring out self-confidence in others by adding an emphasis on confidence-building to the way you delegate and trust across 1) direction, 2) bounded authority, 3) resources, and 4) accountability.
Direction. Providing direction helps others follow. Start with the problem you need solved or the opportunity you can take advantage of. Be clear on the objective – what they should accomplish. Then, let them determine how to get it done. Finally, bring out their self-confidence by empowering them to do it their way within appropriate guidelines or strategic boundaries.
Authority. It’s counter-intuitive to some, but bounded authority is more confidence-building than is blanket authority. Strategic boundaries for tactical decisions give people confidence in their ability to make those tactical decisions without worrying about others second-guessing them.
Resources. A big part of how is resources. Instead of giving them the resources you think they need, ask them what they think they need and then help them assemble those resources or make things work with the resources available.
Accountability. The key here is assuming success. Have confidence in the people to whom you delegate. Show them your confidence in them and in their approach. Recognize and reward them for their achievements at milestone steps along the way to bring out their self-confidence.
Putting it all together. If you’re lucky enough to have followed a level 5 confidence-activating pinnacle executive, you know how it feels. You know how it feels to follow someone who cares about building enduring greatness, puts others first, and is relentless in the pursuit of what matters. You know how it feels to follow someone who lives “Be. Do. Say.” – someone you respect for who they are and what they represent. You know how it feels to follow someone who trusts you, makes you feel better about yourself, and brings out your own self-confidence.
What’s stopping you from doing what these leaders do, attracting followers like they do, and bringing out others’ self-confidence?
You get to set your own direction and approach. You get to set your own boundaries. You get to assemble the resources you need. And you get to feel good about your contributions along the way.
It’s already inside of you. All you need is to bring out your own self-confidence.
How can I help?
Click here for a list of my Forbes articles and a summary of my book on executive onboarding: The New Leader’s 100-Day Action Plan.