Separating Fact from Fiction
One assumption is that all leaders need to become transformational leaders. This results in many companies focusing only on creating transformational leadership mindsets and skillsets and ignoring the capabilities required to fundamentally reposition the core business.
Leaders need to straddle both sides of the equation, as entrepreneurs who can restructure and optimize existing business, and as innovators who can create future sources of revenue and profit through new business models.
Another commonly held belief is that leaders need to constantly take risks and try new ways of problem solving. In truth, leaders need to walk the line carefully. To be both experimenters, constantly looking for better ways to deliver value, while at the same time driving operational excellence and profitability using proven systems and processes.
Essentially, leaders must be able to implement and get others to implement well-established and well-tested procedures but must also be willing to test out new and better ways to deliver value, with the understanding that doing so may lead to failed experiments.
Effective leadership means knowing when to use informal power and networks to influence and move things forward, and when to use power arising from the formal structure and governance processes of the organization.
It is an interesting balance of leveraging formal structures and processes to achieve organizational success while also leveraging on social networks, social influence and informal processes to achieve your goals.
In order to be effective in formulating and deploying company strategy, leaders need to be both transformers who are creating new businesses, and operators who are constantly adjust the strategy in response to short term market changes