Leadership Soapbox – the question that transforms leadership

This question transforms leadership mindset


Hi, my name’s Neil Poynter and welcome to The Leadership Soapbox.

On this first video, I want to start with a question. And it’s a question, not that we ask of others, but it’s a question that we ask of ourselves, and it’s one that I’ve seen people use and when they do it well it really transforms their thinking and their mindset about leadership.

So, here we go, here’s the question;

What support does my team need from me today, tomorrow, next week, next month, next year, in order for them to be as successful as possible?

Let me do that again.

What support does my team need from me today, tomorrow, next week, next month, next year, in order for them to be as successful as possible?

Let’s just think about that.

Now what I want to do is break that down and I’m going to do it from the end back to the beginning.

So, let’s start with the end piece.

In order for them to be as successful as possible. Now in order for them to be as successful as possible, in order for me to give them the support they need to do that, I’ve got to know what that success looks like.

So, that prompts my thinking straight away.

So, what does that success look like? What are the numbers? What are the outcomes?

What’s that going to be?

What’s that going to look like, feel like, sound like, all of that stuff?

So, we’ve gotta have a goal, the end goal.

Where’s the end goal?

Where’s the end goals in time, performance, whatever they are?

So, we’ve got a performance statement there.

Secondly, coming about, we had the times, today, tomorrow, next week, next month, next year. This is about me thinking not just in the moment, but I’m also planning ahead. I’ve gotta be thinking, what are they going to need from me?

What do they need?

Now that brings up all sorts of topics as to what that support might be and when they need it, but it means I’ve got to plan.

Now, I have heard people have difficulty in seeing planning as work, but this question proves that we need to be planning ahead. We need to be thinking ahead as good leaders in order to set our team up for success.

Okay, let’s come back to the beginning.

What support does my team need from me?

Now, what this does is it puts us into the place where I was taught right from the beginning in my leadership career as an Army Officer at Sandhurst, serve to lead.

In order to lead people, we serve others.

Now, it’s a really good approach to have because what it then does is go, okay, so what do my team need?

What do they need?

They might need direction. They might need decisions. They might need planning.

They might need. Now, that’s another video that I’m going to do as a followup to this, but it puts me in the mindset of, what does my team need from me?

And, it puts me looking outwards to my team, rather than inwards to me. The visual of this is turning an organization chart upside down.

So, if we’re the boss, we’re the boss and it fans out above us. And if you think about it, it’s those people at the top of the organization chart when it’s flipped upside down that we want to make successful and that’s our job.

If we make them really successful at what we need them to be successful at, it’s all going work.

And that’s what this question does.

Now, in the next video what I’m going to do is I’m going to look at a model that is perhaps a basis for what that support might be, and so that we can develop this and go, okay, I’ve now thought about that, let me look at the boxes that I might have to tick and where do I need to take action?

Okay, so there’s the question.

I wonder what that does for you.

I wonder how that feels to you.

I’d be really interested to hear. So please, comment back to me, either in the comments below on YouTube or by email or on LinkedIn, however you feel. But, it’d be really good to get some feedback on this because what I have seen is that this works if it’s done right. Okay, great to speak to you again, great to be with you and I’ll look forward to hearing back from you. Thanks very much.

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