As a student athlete I was a member of the 4x400 relay team. I remember coming off that last turn and heading into the home stretch.
OUR team success depended on MY performance. And MY performance depended on how well I had conditioned myself to perform optimally. Running well is as much a function of what goes on in our mind as it is a function of physical condition.
The best leaders I know understand this dynamic and build it into the daily disciplines of the organization. Here are some of those daily disciplines wise leaders embed, promote, and celebrate:
> They talk about shared values ALL. THE. TIME.
> They identify habits that support the organization's vision and support, praise, and enable them, relentlessly.
> They deliberately prune organizational habits that do not highly align to (in some cases, even run counter to) the vision.
> They understand that it's the PEOPLE in the organization that determine its success (or failure), not the org chart or handbooks.
> They afford team members great autonomy in pursuing the vision of the organization.
> They persistently notice, persistently recognize, and persistently praise effort invested in the pursuit of the organization's vision (even when those efforts fall a bit short).
Just like my relay-running days, performing well depends on disciplined conditioning - along ALL dimensions (and certainly not just around the physical components).