Leadership Perspectives | 12.15.21
Becoming a Leader of Tomorrow
“Leadership is the process of influencing people by providing purpose, direction and motivation to accomplish the mission and improve the organization.” – Army Doctrine, Publication 6-22
Whether it’s your first time in a leadership position or you’ve been leading the same team for years, it is no secret that being a leader comes with several challenges. A leader is relied on by the team to formulate strategies, guide them through tough times and celebrate achievements.
The Thayer Leadership Virtual Program is designed to teach participants techniques to improve their leadership skills and become a leader that a team can follow with trust. While the program features several different methods, there are a few key practices that many attendees found helpful. The program consistently emphasizes the importance of communication and transparency between the leader and their team, as well as the necessity of being held accountable.
Establish a Leadership Philosophy
One of the key techniques the Thayer Leadership program teaches is the use of a leadership philosophy. In short, it is a rule that you create and abide by. The leadership philosophy should reflect yourself and your values, including but not limited to your beliefs, how you expect to lead and what your team members should expect from you as a leader.
The next step is to share your philosophy with your team to ensure that your values and expectations are established. By doing so, you will open an opportunity for communication and collaboration, as well as allow team members to openly express their thoughts and expectations.
“This will generate good back and forth conversation between employer and employee, as well as establish expectations and principles and let folks know who you are,” said Brigadier General Rich Gross, who hosted the final lesson of the program, the Virtual Live Commander’s Call.
Listen, Address and Improve
In addition to a leadership philosophy, another technique the program recommends is the use of the After Action Review (AAR). This method is designed to be a reflective conversation between the leader and the team. While we should take a look at what works, it is also important to look at what does not work and bring it forward during group meetings.
“You don’t talk. You listen,” Gross stated. “It’s a professional discussion between you and your team.”
During the course, several participants also highlighted characteristics that a leader should have, such as leading by example, listening to employees and team members, and acknowledging weaknesses and asking for help.
“We have blind spots,” Gross commented. “You need someone to give you feedback. That feedback is a gift.”
The key to being a good leader is to abide by honesty, accountability and open communication with your team to make sure you’re all on the same page. There is also the matter of ensuring you own up to your mistakes and admit when you do not know something and require help. Being a leader can be intimidating and challenging, but the Thayer Leadership program proves that there are techniques that can make that position one of collaboration and innovation.
BISA is a proud sponsor of the Thayer Leadership Virtual Program, an exclusive program designed to develop leadership skills. Whether you are recently assigned to a new leadership position or are a seasoned leader, leading with integrity and honesty is the responsible thing to do. Share your thoughts on LinkedIn or on Twitter, tagging @BISATweets.