It was delightful to have Dr. David Jackson, founder and President of Jackson Leadership Systems, address the issues of professional development and succession as a part of the Executive Leadership program.
In typical Jackson fashion Dave immediately engaged the participants with some impactful observations about becoming a better leader from his over 40 years as a leadership consultant:
- Following Peter Drucker, management and leadership are not the same – Leaders have followers
- Successful leaders know themselves. They know their strengths and weaknesses and they play from what they do well
“If your actions inspire others to dream more, do more and become more, you are a leader.”
John Quincy Adams
The Three Keys to successful leadership:
- Be clear about your values
- Project a compelling vision
- Talk vision and values
The Fourth Key and one that leads naturally to succession: Delegate
Who can I stretch? What can I delegate?
The primary objective of delegation is more time for you.
Following this introduction, Dave had participants on their feet choosing a leader with whom they feel affinity displayed on flipcharts around the room. Some of the choices included: Martin Luther King, Mother Theresa, Wayne Gretsky, Barack Obama, Aung San Suu Kyi, Hillary Clinton. Once gathered around a flipchart the task was to identify the characteristics of the chosen leader that resulted in participants’ sense of affinity.
Dave emphasized the importance of creating a culture of feedback beginning with by “catching people doing things right” and providing constructive feedback throughout the year.
Prior to this module Dave had participants complete a 360. Walking the talk of a culture of feedback participants systematically and with Dave’s coaching examined their results, initially individually and then in small groups.
The module concluded with Dave’s recommendation that participants’ write out a Leadership Improvement Plan including, at the least, three elements:
- Take 10 minutes a day to reflect
- Figure out steps to delegate more
- Plan to develop a culture of feedback