shepherd“Strategy is not what people follow. They follow a shepherd who has earned the right to be followed, who has demonstrated his love for his sheep, and listened to the others shepherds on his team.”

As much as you strategically plan, and make spreadsheets and scoreboards and action plans and job descriptions (all of which I help companies become more effective), they will die on the vine without a leadership team that models the way like a good shepherd.

Good shepherd-leaders:

1. Have a track-record that can be trusted. Each day, a leader is taking actions, using words, and displaying an attitude–the key is for those three observable items to be full of integrity and on the company mission to the point he/she is believable and followable.

2. Demonstrate care for their people. They truly take interest in both the personal and business lives of their direct reports. They ask caring questions and listen between the lines so that they can empathize at a heart level. They notice when someone is sick or returns from vacation or needs a pep talk to re-start after a failure.

3. Collaborate with their core team. None of us is as smart as all of us, it has been said. Leaders leave the best ideas on the table when not consulting their trusted advisors. Great shepherd-leaders create feedback forums and use their people as sounding boards for direction-setting–and get much better buy-in in the process.

Grab your shepherd’s crook. Instead of beating your people with it, use it to gently guide and relationship-build with your team–and they will walk through walls for you!

Contact me for a free leadership strategy-session to brainstorm specific ways to lead your team toward greater results! pcgrowingforward@gmail.com