Sunday, December 16, 2012

Peter Bregman: How to manage yourself

Peter Bregman is a leadership consultant who writes about how to manage oneself.  He has written a couple of books on business leadership, and speaks to executives in coaching how to be more productive.

Here are some interesting blog posts from his website:
He also appeared on TEDxMillRiver event discussing business leadership through admitting "I don't know."

I share Bregman's view of being truthful to not knowing something.  In any situation there are things that the leader does not know.  Some could be lack of efforts on the leader's part, but many are just simply not knowable.  Being able to admit to that truth requires great self-esteem and willingness to extend the hands to collaborate.  It creates an environment where ideas can be exchanged and a solution can be built upon them.

A leader is not the person who measures the followers and reinforces them to do better when they fall behind.  A true leader is someone whom the followers can look up to and trust.  Great leaders are the one who creates collaborative environment where the followers can contribute at their best.

As a practical advice, Bregman suggests focusing on tasks instead of goals.  Don't drive toward end of year revenue target.  Instead invest the time calling customers, implementing requested features, and delivering them to customer's satisfaction.  When each team can execute their tasks with greater efficiency, meeting the revenue target will happen naturally.

It's about awarding the right behavior, even if it results in a short-term loss.  That's not possible without long-term vision and a firm belief that today's tasks are helping us get to the goal closer.  And to build that trust, the leader must be able to create the collaborative environment where the leader does not offer all the answers.

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