The remarkable transformation of John Sloan and his team, described in Chapter 4, illustrates the benefits of successful post-heroic leadership. Teams are able to arrive at more creative, high-quality decisions; there is greater commitment to implementation; and everything takes less time. These outcomes are the result of numerous changes in working processes:
- Individual team members and the group as a whole can influence the unit’s most critical issues and each other to a greater extent.
- Members have more clout with the leader.
- The leader no longer has to hold back strong opinions or hide power since the members will push back if they disagree.
- Disagreements are open and task related, not covert battles for dominance.
- All have an opportunity and an obligation to contribute.
- People hold one another accountable for performance.
- All team members pull together.
- Information is shared, not hidden.
- Problems and positions are visible.
- People can ask for help when necessary since neither leader nor members are expected to have all the answers.
- Meetings create energy.
The positive outcomes observed at Applico are similar to those at Pharmco, which we introduced in Chapter 1. In both cases, teams developed through post-heroic leadership were able to handle problems that few managers would have thought possible. They demonstrated that sharing management responsibilities ...