As discussed previously, Level 5 Leadership is a concept developed by Jim Collins. After several years of research, Collins discovered that all of the great organisations that he studied were headed by what he called "Level 5 Leaders." Below are the steps toward becoming a Level 5 Leader.
Level 5 leaders are humble and they maintain their pride about who they are as people, their achievements and worth without arrogance. The excessive pride of some leaders causes the derailment of corporate leaders. A great leader constantly asks for feedback to understand how well they are performing. A true leader supports his or her team in any and every way without making their sense of superiority get in the way.
Level 5 Leaders are sometimes mistakenly thought of as "weak," because they ask for help when they need it. However, learning how to ask for help is a genuine strength, because it lets you call upon the expertise of someone stronger in an area than you are. The result? The entire team or organisation wins; not just you.
A top attribute for great leaders is taking responsibility for your actions. Own any issue you face and hold yourself and others accountable. Make a plan to fix an issue, execute it and move on. Management consultant Todd Herman defined personal accountability as "being willing to answer … for the outcomes resulting from your choices, behaviours, and actions." When you’re personally accountable, you take ownership of situations that you’re involved in. You see them through, and you take responsibility for what happens – good or bad. You don’t blame others if things go wrong. Instead, you do your best to make things right.
Level 5 Leaders are incredibly disciplined in their work. When they commit to a course of action, no matter how difficult it is, they stick to their resolve. If you know in your heart that you're right, then don't let the cynics divert you from a course of action. It's always important to listen to differing opinions, of course, but don't let fear be your driving motivator when you make, or change, a decision.
Find the Right People
Level 5 leaders depend on the people around them. They should spend time finding the right people and helping them reach their full potential. If you are a leader or manager already, you probably know without thinking about it, the potential of each employee.
When you demonstrate to your team members that you love and believe in what you're doing, they will too. If you're having a hard time finding passion in your work, then you need to search for the human benefit in what you're doing. Leading with true passion will allow you to take your business to places you have never imagined. Passion is the desire to serve others and excel and do your best.
You can grow into the Level 5 leadership if you slowly adopt the required skills. Good to great transformations do not happen within your business without a humble yet fierce driver of change. You need to be someone who is relentless in producing results while encouraging the best in others.
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