Does your Leadership Footprint vanish with the next wave?

The most important quarter in the history

Most people strive hard to deliver every day. Strive hard to deliver on the targets and results, that are expected from them. This often implies running to meet the deadlines or hit the numbers – sales revenue, costs level, transactions, output, quality… everything tied into the functional area, in which you are responsible.

And yes, delivering on the targets right ahead of you is a first enabler to enjoy success and make an impact. It leaves a mark in the sand, visible to everyone, that here is someone who delivers on expectations.

Perhaps you also noticed that short term results are only great until the next month or the next quarter. It often appears that the current month and the current quarter is by far the most important in the history of your company (and by the way, this was also the case 3 months ago, and will probably be the case in 3 months from now)... [irony may appear]

Long term success is more than short term + short term + short….

As you move on, achieving yet one target after the other, you ensure one short term success after the other. These short term results are all like soft and fragile footprints in the sand. They vanish with the next wave or tide, coming already in the next month or quarter.

In other words, a long term success or a rock solid mark in the sand, which will remain over longer periods of time, takes more than delivering month after month after month after….

Preparing to deliver tomorrow

Shaping the longer term footprint has a lot to do with HOW you deliver your short term results. If you apply the same process, same model, same approach, and same way of doing things month after month after month, you may achive the right objectives, but you are not improving. You are not making it easier for you to deliver next month or quarter.

Your Leadership Footprint shapes your personal brand

Your footprint is what you are and will be known for. You should own this, and you should define for yourself what and how you gradually want to improve in the way things are done.

Shaping the footprint is about selecting a focus area, where you want to make a change. This could be in areas like:
•  a smarter way of doing things
•  a better way of connecting with customers
•  we should be better in X
•  our cooperation with team W should improve
•  an easier approach to a chaotic process
…or some other area, which you sense should and could be improved.

This is comparable to the vision and strategy plan of an organization – or rather to the execution of that vision through the strategy. It starts with a personal ambition of the mark you want to leave (beyond of course delivering short term results), and is measured on how well you execute it.

Not all improvements are done in a week or 2, but without a clear direction for the improvement, you will never get there.

It is Win-Win-Win

The leadership footprint is not a classical win-loose-game. If orchestrated well, it is in all true means a 3 x win, impacting:

1.  You
Leaving a valuable mark, improving things as part of what you have achieved and will be remembered for.

2.  The team
The team is running a better or more smooth operation, and have been contributing to the achievement. For each of them, this has value in terms of contributing to a success, being part of developing and installing the change, and showing capable of participating in and adapting to change.

3.  The organization
Without your contribution, the organization would not have improved like it did. You have helped the organization improve, and that has a great value.

Have a look in the mirror...

Are you hunting short term results, or also building for the future?

Do you create win-win-win through your leadership and gradually improving:
•  Your own brand?
•  The teams capabilities?
•  The organization’s way of working?