The Leadership Scorecard
I. Instill Confidence
II. Engender Trust
III. Gain Commitment to Action
The ability of a leader to Instill Confidence, Engender Trust and Gain Commitment may not on the surface seem to be critical to successful and effective leadership until you consider what results their opposites have.
If instead of a leader instilling confidence they trigger doubt, if instead of engendering trust they trigger distrust, if instead of gaining commitment they trigger apathy or resistance how successful or effective can a leader hope to be?
As a sample of the Leadership Scorecard, let’s consider what is necessary to Inspire Confidence. For purposes of elucidating the key components let’s use Steve Jobs as an example.
I. Instill Confidence
- Define Reality – This is a prerequisite to articulating a vision. It’s about seeing an unmet need, an unseized opportunity that is hidden in plain sight. All you need to consider is an experience in your customer or client that would cause them not just to need or want what you have, but to be in a state of “gotta have it!” urgency. In Steve Jobs’ case he loved beauty, simplicity and technology. Prior to creating Apple the reality he saw was that computers had the potential to change the world and nearly everything in it, but computers were: a) too complicated; b) unreliable; and c) just plain ugly. For the next President of the United States, defining that reality is that: a) America’s competitiveness in the world is at risk as long as students have little interest in math and science which is at the core of technology and a critical underpinning to progress that enables America to successfully compete; b) health care doesn’t serve the increasing needs of the ill and infirm; c) the focus on finance compounded by its opaqueness to the general public continues to disincentivize the building of truly valuable products and services.
- Declare Mission – This is also about declaring a focus for future activity. For Jobs it was that we will create a computer that is: a) simple; b) nearly bullet proof in reliability; c) beautiful and if we do, “Everybody will want one and we will change the world.” And also for Jobs it was, “By the end of the 1980’s we will build a computer that will be in everyone’s home doing things that people never dreamed possible.” It wasn’t explaining, “Technology has so many uses and such utility that we need to make sure that people have the chance to take advantage of it.” That’s reminiscent of J.F.K. saying, “This nation should commit itself to achieving the goal, before this decade is out, of landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to the Earth.” He didn’t explain, “We really need to beef up our space program so that the Soviets don’t win the space race.” For the next President, “By the end of this decade we will transform the mindsets and focus of Americans to desiring education and healthy lives supported by companies that will become profitable by selling products and services that support that transformation and companies that create and produce true value will drive our economy more than finance.”
- Decide Strategy – Steve Jobs’ strategy was a vision of what a simple, bullet proof and beautiful product would look like that would both wow people when they experienced what it could do and would even delight them by opening the box to see the product on their desk or lap. Anything necessary to create that “usefulness and love at first sight” in an Apple product would be done and anything that distracted or derailed that happening would be eliminated. So just as aerospace engineers got to be part of the adventure of a lifetime – and something they would be able to tell their grandchildren – in going to the moon, the people at Apple who created the Macintosh, ipod, itunes, iphone, ipad and icloud would be part of the adventure of their lifetime to bring the world into the digital age by bringing the digital experience to everyone in the world. For the next President it will be to build and promote anything that increases and eliminate anything that decreases the desires and actions by Americans to learn math and science, rediscover a joy of learning and revive an innate curiosity that mitigates against conspicuous — and in the end unsatisfying — consumption, and do the same with regard to creating a health care system that works the creating of value in products and services vs. financial accumulation not tied to creating value.
With regard to your leader.
How Much Does Your Leader Instill Confidence
- Define Reality – on a scale of 1 to 10 (1=not at all, 5= somewhat, 10=yes), your leader can see into a situation, gap, opportunity which if seized and an outcome which if achieved would be a game changer to everyone it affects. Answer: ___ Now define what it is that your leader sees and what opportunity they could seize __________________________.
- Declare Mission – on a scale of 1 to 10 (1=not at all, 5= somewhat, 10=yes), your leader declares (rather than explains) a commitment to achieving the outcome they see in the reality above. Answer: ___
- Decide Strategy – on a scale of 1 to 10 (1=not at all, 5= somewhat, 10=yes), your leader (with or without the help of others) can reverse engineer and strategize the steps to achieving the above outcome. Answer: ___
The closer the above score is to 10-10-10 the more confidence you will have in your leader.
For more information on the Leadership Scorecard with regard to Instilling Confidence, Engendering Trust and Gaining Commitment to Action and how to use it in your company or organization contact Dr. Goulston at: firstname.lastname@example.org.