Richard Martin's Monday Morning Brilliant Manoeuvre - 8 April 2013
April 8, 2013
The secret of successful leadership is to be respected, not liked.
With all the controversy surrounding Sheryl Sandberg's book, Lean In, one thing that is going unnoticed is that she is measuring leadership by the wrong metric. Apparently, research has shown that hardnosed women leaders are less likeable than equivalent male leaders. In other words, a demanding and effective female leader is considered a 'bitch,' while a highly effective male leader is admired. Unfortunately, that's the wrong metric for leadership performance. When I was a young platoon commander in the army, I had a commanding officer who told us that the true measure of leadership success was to be respected, not liked. When you're respected, you influence through competence and ability, and likeability may result as a by-product.
People follow those who have a claim to leadership, but only if they obtain results. Nobody wants to follow a loser, or someone who meanders aimlessly without purpose or ability.
Richard Martin is a consultant, speaker, and executive coach. He brings his military and business leadership and management experience to bear for executives and organizations seeking to exploit change, maximize opportunity, and minimize risk.
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