Winning Over the Team

by Dr. Ted Fish / January 01st 2020

One of the hardest tasks facing any leader - of any age - is becoming the Head of an already established group. Fundamentally, it boils down to one question: how do you win their trust? I've watched Heads of independent and public schools, University Deans and Department chairs, student leaders and CEO's grapple with this question. The most successful have followed these four principles, which are evidenced brilliantly in this highly readable article about first year Los Angeles Lakers coach, Frank Vogel: #1 Listen first and take what others say to heart. Great leaders first win hearts, then minds. And the fastest way into a human being's heart is to listen to how they see the world and what they want. #2 Demonstrate commitment through preparation and technical excellence. If we are to lead others, they must trust our preparation and our mastery of the essential issues facing the wellbeing of the group. #3 Never get too high or too low. Emotional balance, constancy, and consistency of manner make leaders safe. #4 Give the feedback that needs to be given. Great leaders never miss a chance for meaningful praise. Nor do they shy away from holding everyone - even the stars - accountable, because no one matters more than the mission.

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