choice six
share success
Coming together is the beginning.
Keeping together is progress.
Working together is success.
Henry Ford
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AS YOU reach a position where you have control over the
first five choices in the personal leadership framework, you
might find that there’s a fine line between being self-confident
and being selfish. By having control over your life, you might
appear to ignore or override other people’s needs. Using your
personal power solely to achieve the things you desire will
undo the benefits accrued so far. Personal leadership that is
selfish and short-lived is not true success. The only real form
of personal leadership is one founded on the notion of shared
and sustainable outcomes and the key to this choice is the
absolute focus on mutual benefit.
Shared success is about using the following tools:
advocacy and enquiry – the ability to tell others what we
expect of them and ask them what they expect of us
thinking ‘compound’ – the idea that good begets great,
and great begets excellent
the values bridge – the alignment of our values, our
personal value and feeling valued.
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Advocacy and enquiry
You can only achieve shared success if you understand what
success means for you and others. I see people working
together to achieve a shared outcome but they don’t really
understand what the other person wants to achieve. The end
result teeters between a battle of wills as each person
struggles to assert their view of success, or lacklustre output
because no one has really said what is important for them. If
we assume that everyone is different and has distinct goals
and ambitions, then we can understand what real success is
for the people we work and live with.
Well, it worked for me, so it must work
for you!
I’ve worked in many teams that had larger than life, extrovert
managers who, when they come to reward the people in the
team, follow a reward pattern that aligns with their view of
the world. This might be to take people down to the pub for a
big party, put the person’s name in banners around the room
or publish their success in the company newsletter. This is fine
if you’re someone who shares those extrovert preferences, but
if you’re anything like me, more of an introvert, this type of
reward is unsettling; I’ve found it actually reduced my desire
to improve on the results next time round. Though with the
best of intentions, the manager believes they are sharing their
success, in fact they’re operating on the basis of a selfish
success principle.
choice six share success
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However, it isn’t the manager’s fault if the rewards they think
people will value are based on their own preferences. As
individuals, we have a say in the matter and a responsibility
to be courageous, if that’s what it takes, to tell them our
preferences and how we’d like to be rewarded. The only way
to share success is to operate a push–pull system. A push
strategy ensures that others will understand what success
means to you, and a pull strategy means you can take time out
to understand what success will be for them:
advocacy – making sure other people know what you
want and need by having the courage to tell them
enquiry – understanding other people’s goals, dreams and
desires, by showing consideration and seeking to under-
stand what success means for them.
Once you understand these two dimensions you can appre-
ciate how they interrelate and what the consequences are
when they are observed in a relationship.
As these two dimensions interact we can realize four different
types of success (see Figure 6.1):
Selfish. This is high advocacy and is an appropriate
strategy when you have to fight a raging fire. I see this in
senior managers who have to rescue a company that has a
problem but don’t have time to negotiate solutions – they
have to set a direction and head for it fast. However, once
in this position, you risk not being able to step into a
different segment.
Squandered. The result of low advocacy and enquiry
skills. You’ll see this in committee meetings where people
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