Walking away from the office a while back, I came up with a question I'm asking all my Executive Coaching clients,
"What does leadership mean, now, to the people we're working around every day?"
For the Productive Leader, it will have a different - often expanding - definition:
Leadership: the capacity of someone to lead.
Lead: To guide or conduct in a certain course, or to a certain place or end, by making the way known.
As I look at those two definitions and think of some of the books I've read, articles I've skimmed, conferences I've attended, coaches I've hired, and mentors I've been lucky enough to work with, I've realized that leadership means something different to everyone...
If you'd like to gain perspective on the different generations in the workplace, and what Productive Leaders of the past and future just might look like to those in the work force right now, take 15 minutes and watch this presentation at TED. Four-star general Stanley McChrystal shares what he learned about leadership over his decades in the military.
How can you build a sense of shared purpose among people of many ages and skill sets? By listening and learning -- and addressing the possibility of failure.
"Leaders can let you fail and yet not let you be a failure." -- Stanley McChrystal
When you walk away from the office over the next few days, ask yourself, "How am I being a Productive Leader right now?"