Words Leaders Use – Or At Least They Should!

Good morning to you!Flowers by Keely

Over the years I have come to better appreciate the power of words. Time and again, when I have worked with organizations, the employees often tell me “I only hear from them (their managers) when I make a mistake, I wish they would say something when I do a good job” or “I wish I knew how I was doing, no one ever says anything about my work” or “I worked extra hours this week trying to ship product on time and no one said thank you” and so on.

One mark of a leader is a good vocabulary that they use well and often. This particular vocabulary uses words and phrases such as the following:

Thank you!

Great job, I particularly appreciate how you did ________.

I’m sorry, I failed to ________.

I was wrong. You were right.

Great insight! Excellent idea!

Would you help me to ________? We need your input on ____.

I am glad you are a part of XYZ Organization, you make a difference!

I appreciate your hard work and dedication – you are a great example to the others.

You have worked long enough for the day – go home and be with your family.

You have earned your vacation and you need to take it – XYZ won’t fall apart while you are gone.

Stay off email at night! 

Here, let me help you.

You know, you did not do so well on ____, but I know you want to do well and I want to help you.

And finally one big addition to your vocabulary – laughter. Learn to laugh and to let your staff know that it is good to laugh!

You can change lives with your words – literally. So speak words of truth, grace, and peace to those you lead and see how it causes them to flourish.

“A gentle tongue is a tree of life, . . .” Proverbs 15:4

“Gracious words are like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and health to the body.” Proverbs 16:24

“A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in a setting of silver.” Proverbs 25:11


Core Leadership Skills vs. Adaptive Leadership Skills

Good Monday morning! I hope you had a great weekend.

Have you thought about the difference in leadership skills? Such as the difference between the skills that got you the leadership position versus the ones that will make you a great leader? Did you know there was a difference?

The challenge as leaders is that often after we are placed into a leadership position we think we don’t have to keep learning and growing. We have arrived and we just need to put into practice what got us here – right? No, not hardly. Once you land in a leadership position – that is when “school” starts. You have to learn a whole new set of skills to become a truly effective leader.leadership 2.0

According to the authors of Leadership 2.0, most of us have a Core set of leadership skills that got us the leadership job: 1. STRATEGY: Vision, Acumen, Planning, and Courage to Lead. 2. ACTION: Decision Making, Communication, and Mobilizing Others, and 3. RESULTS: Risk Taking, Results Focus, and Agility.

However, they go on to say that the truly great leaders have Adaptive leadership skills consisting of: 1. EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE: Self-Awareness, Self-Management, Social Awareness, and Relationship Management. 2. ORGANIZATIONAL JUSTICE: Decision Fairness, Information Sharing and Outcome Concern. 3. CHARACTER: Integrity, Credibility, and Values Differences, and  4. DEVELOPMENT: Lifelong Learner and Developing Others.

Most of us struggle with just the core leadership skills and so often do not learn the adaptive skills. If you want to really make great impact on the world around you, then you need to add the adaptive leadership skills to your toolbox.

Have a great week!