5 Characteristics of the Perfect Leader

April 1, 2019 by  

Some leaders inspire and motivate, but many fail miserably to engage their employees. Some run a highly effective team, yet their team members live and work in fear. Some are just simply absolute disasters. From the man-eater to the psycho, many industries seems to have created the ultimate formula for the “bad boss” character. With millions of books, DVDs, research papers, and solutions in the business world today, leaders need to figure out how to be effective and successful.

Here is a truth: people quit people, not jobs.
The best leaders became great by taking a genuine interest in each and every team member. Not only do they want their organization to succeed, but they want the individual employee to fulfill their potential because that is a win/win for everyone. Happy employees are hardworking employees who are more efficient, productive, and creative! In addition, because happiness actually enhances one’s immune system, they are also sick less often.

Here are the key skills for the “perfect” leader:
1. Be an Effective Communicator
Effective communication is the most important ability! You need to be able to talk to your team; help them with their goals and the goals of the organization. You need to be able to define what success means to your department and the organization. This can be done daily, weekly, bi-weekly, or whatever suits your team and task list. Weekly meetings keep people tuned in and engaged on what they as a team have to accomplish each week. Apart from team goals, you need to be able to communicate the needs for your employees’ development. There is nothing greater in this world than constructive Encourage them when they do something well, help them when they have a problem and let them know what they need to work on in the future. Your support, encouragement and acknowledgement are key to their success and ultimately to the success of the team as a whole.

2. Lead the Way: “walk the walk”
Often, companies promote a top performer because of previous successes, without ever determining or assessing if that person is actually capable and suited to manage a team. True leaders are able to instill trust, provide appropriate direction, and delegate responsibility. Just because an employee reached a sales goal of one million last quarter does not mean that he or she can manage or lead a team successfully. The perfect leader will be a combination of a top performer with the skills and attributes to lead a team effectively.

3. Be Passionate
The ideal leader should be excited about the organization’s mission, what we are trying to accomplish, and will instill these aims and goals in their team members. This is done with effective communication and modelling of the behaviours necessary to carry out those aims appropriately and successfully.

4. Be a Relationship Builder
Effective leaders spend a significant amount of time and effort building trust, respect, and rapport with their team members. Doing this builds loyalty with employees, makes them feel valued, and in turn, valued employees work harder. Offer a rewards programs, offer to teach them new skills, feed them, and always treat everyone respectfully.

5. Be a Hard Worker
No organization can run like a smoothly operated machine unless everyone knows what is expected of them, what they are responsible for and how to accomplish that. A great leader understands the flow of operations and must be willing to do just as much work as their team members. A successful leader should not ask a team member to do something they would not do themselves. If you model this behaviour you will certainly earn the respect of your team.
Some people are more natural leaders than others, however, anyone who wishes to become a “perfect” leader can do so by learning the skills and behaviours necessary to achieve success as an effective and successful leader.

5 Keys to Maximizing Employee Engagement

January 31, 2019 by  

Most corporate HR mangers make it a key focus to find ways to maximize employee retention and productivity. However, they are often finding that working toward that goal is getting harder than ever. Organizations certainly want to keep their prized people, but they sometimes discover that those individuals are itching to leave. Perhaps that’s a product of today’s economic and technological landscape – because currently the competition for talent is fierce, and the next job opening is just one mobile app or web search away. It is not surprising that retaining employees can be quite difficult. That is why figuring out effective ways to maximize engagement and satisfaction is so key.

According to a recent survey data, 57% of working people plan to look for better positions.

The reasons are: more money (cited by 48 percent of respondents), better career advancement opportunities (27 percent) and boredom or job dissatisfaction (9 percent). This situation isn’t likely to change anytime soon due to the current job climate.

There are a few key steps that can help companies regain employee engagement and workplace stability.
1. Manage early interactions at your organization:
The most important week on a new job is the first one. New hires should be welcomed upon arriving in the workplace and made to feel like they belong and fit in. This will go a long way toward keeping them engaged long-term.

2. Provide growth opportunities
People are more likely to stay in their jobs if they have the chance to be promoted, acquire greater status, have more responsibilities, and earn more money. Offering these sorts of opportunities can make a huge difference in employee engagement and reduce turn over.

3. Monitor job satisfaction
Managers should regularly observe their employees and gauge their happiness levels. If satisfaction begins to decline, the HR manager should be willing to intervene quickly and identify ways to ameliorate the situation and improve the employee’s experience in their job.

4. Maximize loyalty
How committed do people feel to their jobs and the organization? Are they given rewarding work that they have been well trained for and feel that they can do well? So they know what is expected of them and how they fit into the big picture of the company? If so, people feel more loyalty in their positions so are less likely to leave. In addition, employees need to feel valued so acknowledgement of their contributions is also essential to them wanting to stay. This is an important mindset that companies should strive to attain.

5. Develop great leaders
Great leadership is the key to any business’s success. Effective supervisors/managers are perhaps the most important factor behind the outcomes of a work team, therefore companies should do what they can to develop effective successful leaders and help them to be able to motivate their employees by example. Leaders need to be accountable, excellent communicators and models for the sort of behaviours and attitudes they wish to see emulated by their team members.

If you follow the keys described above, you will be more likely to have a successful long term business with happy, productive, efficient, creative, and long-term employees.

Five Suggestions for Leadership Development

December 28, 2018 by  

Sometimes, leaders do not realize that their style of leadership can be perceived as flawed or ineffective. If you do not get some feedback about how you are doing, the perception becomes the reality! One of the most difficult tasks of leadership is gaining an understanding of that perception and then taking appropriate steps to improve and remedy the issues that are preventing you from being an excellent leader.
In today’s business world, the development of excellent leaders is extremely important for the success of an organization. Sadly, many companies are not addressing this necessity while others are providing their leaders with training that teaches them the skills necessary to make them into effective, excellent leaders. What is your organization doing?

Here are 4 factors to consider:
1. Is the job a good fit for this person?
This is the most important question as job fit has everything to do with whether a potential leader is going to succeed or fail. If you put a person into a leadership position who is afraid to delegate work, cannot make decisions or is not seen as competent in a position as a leader, they will be unlikely to succeed. It is better to make sure that the person being offered the leadership role has the necessary qualifications and skills to be an effective leader.

2. Accepting constructive feedback.
Getting feedback is one of the most effective ways to help in the development of leaders as this gives them an opportunity to find out how their actions are being perceived by the people they are leading. Often times a person may not realize that they are not being as effective as they think and if they accept constructive feedback they can learn how to become a better leader. In this way, they can learn more about themselves and the skills needed to be good in their job. Self-awareness is key to their success.

3. Providing appropriate coaching and training.
People develop best with on-the-job coaching and training. You need to define exactly what you expect from a leader in your company and clearly articulate that to your leadership prospects. Next, you need to make sure that the leader fully understands your company’s culture, processes, and systems. You can first evaluate the person’s current skills and then you will know what sort of coaching and training they require in order to fulfill the position as you have outlined it. You can also create a project or the person or a team project to see how they manage the assignment. Coaching is a consistent and reliable management style that creates an open line of communication, trust, respect, and rapport as well as an opportunity for growth.

4. Motivation for high performance.
You can create a specific development plan for your leaders so they can visualize their future with your company. Offering new challenges keeps them engaged and interested and builds motivation for high performance as they will likely work harder if they have a clear goal in mind. Recognize and acknowledge your leaders for significant achievements as this shows that you value their contributions to your organization.

5. Effective communication skills.
In a study done a few years ago by Global Knowledge it was learned that the most important skill for any successful leader is effective communication. This is because it is necessary for a leader to be able to clearly articulate their vision, deliver clear, honest, influential and impactful messages to their people. In addition, they need to employ active listening in order to learn about their people and recognize their potential and then help them to fulfill that potential. Also, they need to encourage input, creativity and innovation and that can only be done if they listen well and espouse an “open door” policy for their people. If not, opportunities can be missed.

Leaders do not just appear overnight. Rather they need to be continually trained and developed in order to succeed in a company. Many times, employees are afraid to speak up when they see something a leader may be doing incorrectly; then the leader goes on making the same mistake because they are not aware of the problem. Remember it is so important to open up those lines of honest communication, to continuously coach your team, and to motivate your leaders to be the best they can! The better the leader is, the better your organization will be as they set the tone and commitment to your company’s culture, aims and goals!

What Makes an Effective Manager?

February 2, 2018 by  

Developing effective management skills to deal with the challenges and problems of any organization is certainly important for many businesses and organizations in the current globally competitive environment, especially with the rapidly changing technology we face. Every organization should develop an appropriate managerial training program so that when they elevate someone to that position, they will be sure that the individual will be able to be effective in this role.
Effective Management Skills” help people to be successful in leading their team so that they can help each person to fulfill their potential which will benefit both the person and the entire organization. Proper management is vital in today’s complex environment. The quality of effective management styles can help to determine the culture of the organization, the productivity of its staff, and, ultimately, the success or failure of an organization. A manager should have the ability to direct, supervise, encourage, inspire, support, and co-ordinate. They should also be able to embrace and guide changes in a manner that gets others onboard. Managers need to develop their own leadership qualities as well as those of others. Management requires planning, problem- solving, organizational, and communications skills. These skills are key to successful leadership. In addition, a good manager should exhibit qualities such as integrity, honesty, courage, commitment, sincerity, passion, determination, compassion, and sensitivity.

An effective manager should have the following skills:
I. Creative Problem-Solving Skills.:
(1) Ability to describe and analyze a problem.
(2) Ability to identify the causes of the problem.
(3) Ability to develop creative options and to choose the best course of action.
(4) Ability to implement and evaluate an effective and efficient decision.

II. Effective Communication Skills:
(1) Practice active listening.
(2) Employ effective presentation skills.
(3) Use supportive feedback Skills.
(4) Have excellent report writing skills.

III. Conflict Management Skills:
(1) Ability to identify the sources of conflict, both for functional and dysfunctional conflicts.
(2) Ability to understand the personal styles of conflict resolution.
(3) Ability to choose the best strategy for dealing with a conflict.
(4) Be able to develop the skills to promote constructive conflicts in the organization and the team, as not all conflict is bad, in some cases, it gives us a chance to learn a new approach or perspective.

IV. Negotiation Skills
(1) Ability to distinguish between distributive and integrative negotiations, the various positions one should take, and the principle negotiations necessary to be able to resolve the issue appropriately.
(2) Ability to identifying the common mistakes in negotiation and employ ways to avoid them.
(3) Ability to develop rational thinking when negotiating.
(4) Ability to develop the effective skills for negotiation that benefit all parties involved.

V. Self-Awareness and Improvement:
(1) Having a clear understanding of the concept of self-management. This is emotional intelligence.
(2) Ability to evaluate the effectiveness of self-management.
(3) Ability to use creative and holistic thinking.
(4) Having a clear understanding of self-motivation.
(5) Ability to effectively manage self-learning and change.

In addition, there are other qualities that would be essential for a manager to be able to successfully manage his/her staff.
1. Organizer:
A Manager has to take a long-term view; while a team member will be working towards known and established goals, the manager must be a strategic thinker so that these goals are selected wisely and appropriately. Using longterm strategic planning, the manager should select the optimal plan for the team and implement it. The manager ensures that work is completed in a timely manner with as few mistakes as possible, deals with problems as quickly as possible, and ensures that the necessary resources are allocated and made available.

2. Protector:
In any company, there can be issues, which can impact the workforce. The manager should be aware, guard against these issues, and protect the team wherever and whenever possible. If someone in the team suggests a good plan, the manager must ensure that it receives a fair hearing and that the team knows and understands the outcome. If someone on the team has a problem, the manager should try to help resolve it and the team should know that he/she is there for them.

3. Visionary:
An effective manager should have a vision of where the team is going, the ability to articulate that vision, and the ability to get others onboard collaboratively.

4. Good Communicator:
The ability to effectively communicate with people is the most important skill for every manager. The Manager is also the team’s link to the larger organization, so must have the ability to effectively negotiate and persuade when necessary to ensure the success of the team and their projects.

5. “Cheer Leader”:
Passion and enthusiasm are contagious. If a manager espouses a positive, can-do attitude others will tend to follow that lead. Usually, positive people are more committed to their goals and tend to also be more optimistic. No one wants to be around a negative person and it is up to the manager to set the tone for the team.

6. Competent:
Managers should be chosen based on their ability to successfully lead others rather than on technical expertise or having been with the company a long time. Expertise in effective management is another aspect of competence and usually needs to be learned. The ability to challenge, inspire, enable, model, and encourage must be demonstrated if managers are to be seen as capable and effective.

7. Effective Delegator:
Trust is an essential element in the relationship between the manager and his or her team. Your trust in others is demonstrated through your actions. Giving team members autonomy to do their jobs as they see fit is empowering. As long as the parameters and timelines are understood, micromanaging is very detrimental so just let them “do their thing”. Just be sure to delegate the right tasks to the right person.

8. Cool Under Pressure:
In a perfect world, projects would be delivered on time, under budget, and with no major problems or obstacles. A leader with a positive attitude will deal with challenges in a timely and appropriate manner. When leaders encounter stressful issues, they are prepared to take them in stride, resolve them, and move on. When this is modeled for the team, they will be more likely to handle things in a similar fashion or come to the manager for suggestions.

9. Team-Builder:
A team builder is essentially a strong, capable person who provides the “glue” that holds the team together so that they can work toward their common goals. In order for a team to become a single cohesive unit, the team leader must understand the process and dynamics necessary for this transformation. He or she must also exercise the appropriate leadership style for each stage of team development. The leader must understand the different team player styles and how to leverage each person’s gifts at the proper time for the proper task.

10.Forward Thinker:
If you want your employees to work hard and be committed to the business, you have to keep them in the loop. Open, honest, clear communication helps foster loyalty and gives employees a sense of pride. It helps them understand how their work contributes to the company’s success and how it fits into the “big picture” that you have laid out for them.

11.Goal Setter: Setting deadlines and goals helps keep employees focused, occupied, and motivated them to do their work. Make sure employees understand their professional growth path in the company and help them to do the things necessary to achieve those goals.

12. Active Observer: It is impossible to know about personality conflicts, lagging productivity, or other problems in the office if you are not paying attention to what is going on. If you notice a change in an employee’s work habits or attitude, try to get to the root of the problem before it starts affecting the rest of your staff. If there are conflicts occurring, they will not go away by themselves, intervention is necessary and it usually falls to the manager to get them straightened out.
The first step in dealing with a problem employee is to identify the source of the trouble. Often, a simple, honest talk with the employee will resolve issues such as occasional tardiness or minor attitude problems. Coaching requires a manager to work one-on-one with problem employees or to assign another employee to work with the employee to overcome their shortcomings. The mentor should provide the employee with feedback as well as solutions for improving their performance. Coaching requires patience and a substantial time investment, but it can help modify an employee’s behavior and ultimately enhance the outcome for the team.
Poor performance is not always due to a lack of skills; rather, the employee may simply be disorganized or sloppy. These habits can usually be corrected with proper guidance if the employee is willing to learn new habits. If performance difficulties relate to a lack of skills, then you will need to consider coaching or additional training.

In some cases, an employee becomes a problem because their skills aren´t compatible with their assigned tasks or regular duties. In such situations, offering the employee additional training or assigning them a different set of tasks is usually the most appropriate course of action.
When you notice that, an employee has made some errors, calmly point out the mistakes to the employee, ask them how they think that happened, how they think the unwanted outcome can be remedied and what other option should they consider if this issue appears again. Then encourage them to go ahead and fix the problem and offer support if they need it. Remember to remain positive and focus on how important the employee’s contribution is to the organization and how their efforts help the team.

13.Active Listener: Employee feedback is critical when managing change. Therefore, holding focus groups with employees is a great way to gauge reactions and monitor the progress of how they are accepting and adapting to the change. You also can encourage employees to provide feedback through email or the company intranet. Communication is the cornerstone to successful change management. Talking to your employees is not a one-time event, and you need to reinforce your message by communicating early and often. In addition, if you listen respectfully to them, they will be more likely to come to you with issues and will listen to you when you are speaking with them.

To be an effective manager you must know yourself, your strengths, and your weaknesses, as well as those of the people around you. You must know your objectives and have a clear plan for how you will achieve them. You must build a team of people that share your commitment to achieving those objectives, and you must help each team member to fulfill their potential. When everyone works together toward the common goals they will be more likely to be accomplished.
As the manager, you model the way for your team, so the more positive, calm, and competent you are, and the better you are at effectively communicating with your team, the more success you will all enjoy!

Important Tips on Loyalty and Leadership

July 22, 2017 by  

Leadership and loyalty are two elements that can certainly go together in any organization…..in other words, if you demonstrate good leadership, you will engender loyalty in your people because they will be happy following you and being a part of your organization.
Here are some tips to ensure that you are an effective leader who fosters loyalty because you have created an internal architecture that encourages, supports, and respects the members of your team so that they feel appreciated, challenged and happy. When that happens you will have higher performance, more efficiency, productivity, and creativity……all good for the bottom line!

Try to Overcome fear in order to perform at a higher level:

Don’t suffer from “small pie” disease, as this leads to fear and inaction among your team members. There is always enough to go around so don’t be afraid to share and you will be enriched by that approach many fold.
Continue to feed your mind good stuff. In other words, make a habit of reading uplifting and inspiring articles at the beginning of each day, instead of diving straight into business emails or social media. Starting with more positive thoughts will set you on the right track for positive outcomes.
Reduce the negativity in your day. You can accomplish this by writing down the sorts of media you are consuming and how long you spend on it. Once you have done that, then, you can reduce the time you spend exposed to negative and stressful media and increase the positive and inspiring options available.
Earn validation. Record positive memories of times you succeeded and keep them where you can read them easily and often. That way, you can revisit them to build and maintain your self-confidence and self-esteem.
Constructive Criticism can be beneficial. When criticism is delivered in a constructive, exploratory, and supportive manner, the information can give the individual the opportunity to learn from their mistake, fix the resultant issues and consider other options for future situations so that the mistake is not repeated.
Try to follow both your purpose and your passion. This can be done when you align your work activities with your core values, as well as with the sort of word that you love. When that is accomplished, you will have a greater impact on your outcomes and hence will be more successful and happy.

Foster growth at your company:

Be a big picture thinker. There are several types of business owners: dabblers, dreamers, and leaders in pursuit of excellence. The future belongs to the learner who believes that they should continually improve their ability to lead with effectiveness. Leadership, to a large degree, is an ongoing process and the best leaders invite input from their team to find out how they are doing so that they can improve in areas of weakness.
Marketing creates awareness. Attracting customers and sales happen when you have gained the trust and loyalty of prospects who have experienced your product or services and found them to be reliable, consistent and worthwhile. This takes time, effort and cooperation from all the team members who are in contact with your ideal market. The better your people are trained and supported, given a measure of autonomy and flexibility to under-promise and over-deliver, the more repeat business and even referrals you will receive.
Determine your ideal market. Instead of espousing a desperate, take-all-comers outlook, position your company to take only the best, most appropriate clients/customers who allow you and your team to deliver your best work. That, in the end, will actually lead to more great clients and enjoyable work. In addition, it will be a better use of your prospecting time, especially if you have done your homework well.
Hone your elevator speech. Who wants to listen to something that is not truly relevant to them? Instead, develop a great brand identity that is true to who you are, then talk about it, model it and have your people do the same when they are interacting with prospects.

The road to the successful leadership of your employees:

What makes them happy? Consider why employees stay with you. Do they take pride in their work, enjoy serving customers well or just like being part of a great team? If the answer is yes to all of those questions, then you are likely doing a great job. Happy employees are more productive, efficient, and creative. In addition, they are sick less often and less likely to leave a job that they enjoy. So if you have a lot of turnover, many sick days and a general apathy in your work environment, you need to examine your leadership style and the way your run the culture of your business and try to rebuild it so that your people are happy, challenged, appreciated, supported and encouraged. This could require you to be more of a mentor, offer more autonomy, opportunities for training and advancement, as well as explaining more clearly their exact roles and responsibilities so that they truly understand just how they fit into the “big picture”.
Respect the contributions of your employees. Consider going out on jobs to learn exactly what your workers do. With this deeper understanding, you can then show respect by setting appropriate policies and rewards that reflect that understanding. In addition, the acknowledgment of those contributions goes a long way to making individuals feel appreciated and valued in their positions.
Convert your goals into reality. You can accomplish this when you involve your people collaboratively to recast the company’s goals. When they feel they have a stake in the decision making and then the outcomes, they are more likely to buy into both the process and results because they helped design the process. It is much easier to get workers invested in a cause that they embrace. Therefore, there will obviously be a much better chance that those goals will become reality when “all hands are on deck” toward that end.

Explain the big picture. When you show workers how supporting the cause will grow sales, improve outcomes and reap rewards for everyone, it is likely that that will also create a better, more productive work environment with fewer problems and conflicts. The clearer everyone is about how they fit in and what their contribution means to the end results we are all aiming for, the more likely they are to rise to the occasion and perform to the best of their ability…..a win/win for everyone!

So, if you want to lead a successful organization then considering employing at least some of the tips offered in this blog. And remember, happy, challenged, supported, encouraged, and appreciated employees are more likely to perform better, be sick less often, and be innovative. In addition, when they feel satisfied they will be less likely to seek work elsewhere…..which is always very costly.

One last tip…..have fun!

9 Key Skills for Effective Leadership

June 14, 2016 by  

There is no question that successful leaders need to have many skills in order to be effective in their stewardship role.   Some people may argue about which one is most important.  So let’s examine some of the key skills necessary and then identify the one that is clearly the most important.

First let’s define leadership……

Leadership is the art of mobilizing others to shared aspirations. According to Warren Buffet it is: “The capacity to create a compelling vision and translate it into action and sustain it. Successful leaders have a vision that other people believe in and treat as their own.“

Leadership is about enabling individuals to work as a team, complement one another and find innovative solutions to organizational problems.

Leadership is a rather difficult quality to define and may, in fact, mean different things to different people. However, the key elements of good leadership would likely include the following traits.

Respect

A respected leader will be believed and his/her team will value his/her instructions and directions.

 

Trust

A good leader must demonstrate integrity and honesty. This element provides the best climate for information sharing.  It must be a two way street; the team must trust the leader and the leader must trust the team.

 

Vision

Without vision how can goals be reached? Only the leader with a clear vision of where his/her team is going will be effective in leading them to that achievement.

 

Self-Confidence

Self-confidence serves as the catalyst to decisive action and helps provide the ability to listen to all the options but not act or react only in self-interest.

 

Effective Communication Skills

It is imperative that the leader be able to clearly articulate his/her vision to the team with competence, sincerity, and understanding. This also means that the leader has to be both a good listener as well as a good speaker.

Enthusiasm

A successful leader must possess passion, energy, and commitment in his/ her vision and be able to impart that in a motivational fashion to the team. The leader must be able to encourage the team to embrace the tenets of their vision with fervor and excitement.

 

Feedback

Leaders must have the ability to reward their team members and the team as a whole, in appropriate ways. The leader must also be able to provide constructive criticism when necessary in a manner which will result in improvement rather than causing further deflation of the individual.

 

Reliability

A good leader must be a team player, be prepared, and do what they promise, in a timely fashion. They must set the example, “walk the walk not just talk and talk”.  They must exemplify the aspects of the company culture that they wish to have emulated by the entire team.  They must be willing to take responsibility for what they do and the mistakes they make.

 

Mentoring

True leaders foster, coach, nurture and ultimately develop new leaders. They help to open doors toward new opportunities and support their team members to reach their full potential.  Providing challenges and reachable goals and encouraging new ideas, will provide potential leaders with the role model and support system they need to perform at their best.  The future is brighter when there is young, vibrant, capable leadership in the making.

 

According to the Leadership Challenge, the 5 most valued traits of a leader are:

  1. Honesty
  2. Forward Looking
  3. Competence
  4. Inspiration
  5. Intelligence

 

According to a recent study by Global Knowledge, the most important skill for a successful leader is: Effective Communication.

The reason for this is because this ability allows the leader to establish trust, respect, and rapport with his/her people. It is the core element in developing, maintaining, and nurturing long lasting, meaningful relationships.  It is also the skill necessary to effectively articulate his/her vision for the organization.  Finally, active listening is the key to learning how to deal well with his/her people so that they can enjoy autonomy, mastery of their skills and develop inner and motivational purpose which will be beneficial to everyone and all their goals…… all of which will help to encourage the team to reach their full potential and find more challenges and opportunities open up for them.  It also allows the leader to hear the innovative suggestions offered by his/her team.

Good leadership is the cornerstone of every successful and long lasting business. Development of good leadership takes time, effort, commitment, and dedication, and is an ongoing process.  However, if you continue to improve it will certainly be worthwhile in the long run.

Any place where people work you will find enormous, untapped potential waiting to be developed, waiting to be unleashed!

This is the job of the Leader Coach.

“Leaders must be close enough to relate to others, but far enough ahead to motivate them.” John Maxwell.

And finally…… “You have achieved Excellence as a leader, then people will follow you anywhere, if only out of curiosity.”