Remarkable leadership paper


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Remarkable leadership paper

  1. 1. RUNNING HEAD: REMARKABLE LEADERSHIP 1 Book Review Remarkable Leadership by Kevin Eikenberry Aditya Boyilla (1010699) Hanumanth Reddy Pailla (1010527) Vijay Simha Reddy (1010686) Rajendrasinh Dodia (1011001) University Canada West Professor: Chehra Aboukinane MBA- 504 & Strategic Leadership February 21st 2012
  2. 2. REMARKABLE LEADERSHIP 2 Abstract In this paper we have written a summary of a book written by Kevin Eikenberry,Remarkable Leadership. The book teaches us how to be a remarkable leader byrespecting others, values etc. The author has mentioned many tricks and trades whichshould be followed to a great and successful leader. Few of the topics covered in thisbook are communication styles, are leaders born, supportive behavior, influence impact,focus on customers, responsibility, process and project management to name a few. Myteam has covered all the essential topics in the book and summarized it in a way thatcould be understood by all without many complications.
  3. 3. REMARKABLE LEADERSHIP 3 REMARKABLE LEADERSHIPAre leaders really born? The author starts the book with this eternal question, whether leaders are born ormade. He went on to support his claim about leaders being made, by illustrating variousinstances, but their may be some unique abilities with, which one born with when honedbecomes a remarkable leader, later the author goes about to say “Every person has aleader in them” and there is need to bring it out. The author has written this book to helppeople identify their potential and become remarkable leaders in life (Kevin Eikenberry,2007).Philosophy: It is clear that the beliefs and values of this have guided his through thebook, the author believes there is a vast potential out their, which needs to be brought outand the choice and opportunities one has makes the end limitless, the author insists that “One should not settle with what he has achieved” he believes that in the pursuit ofbecoming a remarkable leader, one should be better than a mediocre leader. The bookfocuses on thirteen core competencies/skills that a remarkable leader should poses, whichinclude communication skills, relationship building, Innovation, decision-making andsome others. The author believes that “ It is the skills at, which you are excel make youremarkable” (Kevin Eikenberry, 2007). The book talks about the importance of knowing ones strengths and weaknesses,it is obvious that for leader to become truly remarkable, he has to overcome his weaknessand hone his innate abilities. Interestingly in here, the author stresses on a key element“Strengths”, he believes that spending time on strengthening ones strengths rather thenworking on your weakness in ones pursuit towards becoming remarkable leader. The
  4. 4. REMARKABLE LEADERSHIP 4author truly believes that every other human being is born with innate talents or skills, healso believes that, there is a leader in every one and it only takes effort and potential andthe will to do, that can transform a person into a remarkable leader. The book laterfocuses on Leadership development process, most of the organizations have differentprocess involved to serve this cause. The author has mentioned about the traditionalmethod, which solely involves training as flawed, as the author believes that trainingalone cannot bring out the remarkable leadership ability in a person. He believes thatalong with training it is the learning part, which is crucial. To achieve this, the author hasmentioned about leadership development models, for instance a model of his involves theneed or desire, having a goal, knowing you strengths and weaknesses, finally ways tolearn, practice and organize (Kevin Eikenberry, 2007). Ultimately it is comes down totime and focus, which decide the end result. It is evident from the book; continuous learning has a substantial impact on theleadership abilities in a person. The author has termed leadership as rather complexEndeavour, able to be a role model to others and helping other grow is one of the keyqualities that remarkable leader should poses. The author believes, it is the learningquality in a leader, which makes him truly remarkable. In here the book mentions aboutthe cycle of learning, which starts at having an experience then followed by reflectionlater generalizing and finally action and then the cycle repeats itself. In her the authorstresses the point remarkable leaders learn from the situations (Kevin Eikenberry, 2007).Championing Change: Change is one such key element, which has a substantial effect on both theorganization and the individual, as the book mentions, a remarkable leader would have
  5. 5. REMARKABLE LEADERSHIP 5the ability to bring, manage change effectively with his set of skills and makes thetransition a smooth one for both the individuals and the organization. In here the authortalks about the four change skills that a leader should poses. Levers of change Planning and implementing Being a change champion Moving past the blockers/resistance The author then talks about the role played by feelings, change levers anddissatisfaction and their effect on the change process and the importance of having avision and goal.Resistance: The book also mentions about Rick Maurer’s “three levels of resistance”(Rick Maurer, 1996). The author describes resistance as the power to create and movechange forward (Kevin Eikenberry, 2007)Communication Styles: According to Kevin Eikenberry (2007), the ability to communicate powerfully doesnot mean it should be comfortable to the leader but it should be communicated in a waythat the other person quickly connects to it. There are four classic communication styles. i. The Doer: A person who wants to get results. Their focus is in the present; they value action, achievement and progress. They use the simplest and the straightforward approach. ii. The Feeler: A person who is connected to the emotion/feelings and thoughts of others. They believe communication is very important to spread the message.
  6. 6. REMARKABLE LEADERSHIP 6 iii. The Thinker: A person who likes to solve problems. They think things through and want all the data provided to them. iv. The Imaginer: A person who has an ability to envision the big picture/future. They like concepts, ideology and discovery.Storytelling is an art, to be a remarkable leader; the person should master this art (KevinEikenberry, 2007). Few types of stories are: i. Official Stories: Stories told by institutions, government, schools, it is used to help build public relations. ii. Invented Stories: They are adapted stories and usually don’t have a point. But if the leader is using this strategy, he/she should make a point so the listeners can recognize it. iii. Firsthand Stories: The stories that have actually happened to us. If the leader tells the story in a positive way, it may impact big with the audience. iv. Secondhand Stories: Telling the stories of others might not cause as big an impact as firsthand stories. But a leader might have lots of stories to tell.My team members can relate the storytelling concept with Dr. Ireland’s think-a-piece, itcame to our attention that storytelling is an important stepping-stone in a pathway ofbecoming a remarkable leader.Building Relationships:Kevin Eikenberry (2007) says they are four skills to learn to build better and strongrelationships. They are
  7. 7. REMARKABLE LEADERSHIP 7 1) Likeability: Being likeable helps other people to open to you. They will be willingly listening to your ideas; it helps to build a personal connection that is an important part of successful communication. i. Be friendly ii. Be relevant iii. Be caring iv. Be genuine 2) Listening: Listening is not just hearing what the other guy says, but to understand what he says and then respond. The author has mentioned few key techniques to be an active listener in the book. 3) Building trust: Trust is an important part of relationship building Trust has four factors i. Believability ii. Dependability iii. Emotional Closeness iv. Selflessness 4) Networking: The value of networking for leaders is significant. Leaders need to build professional network that can provide tremendous value to the organization such as visibility, credibility, and profitability.Developing others:According to the author, an important part of a leader’s responsibility is to developothers. You might have your own perceptions of others and might favor the person who
  8. 8. REMARKABLE LEADERSHIP 8you think has the potential but a leader should give everyone a chance before coming tohis/her own conclusion.Supportive Behaviors:According to a survey from Gallup research (Rath and Clifton, 2004) approximately 61%of the Americans received no praise at their workplace, this lead to employees walkingout of the organizations and joining others. Eikenberry (2007) said leaders should besupportive and gave 10 valuable tips to be followed, they are i. Be flexible: Allow the employees to complete the tasks in their own way. ii. Collaborate: Give the employees more chance to be involved. iii. Help out: Help a team if its facing deadline and a lot of work need to be done. iv. Be of service: Be available to people. v. Value the person: People make mistakes; nevertheless leaders should value the person. vi. Recognize and support their goals vii. Encourage effort: The results might not be up to the mark but leaders should encourage the effort so they will do a better job next time. viii. Praise success: Leaders should praise their employees when they reach the required goals. ix. Celebrate x. Be accountableMentoring: It basically means partnership for learning. The main focus is to shareinformation and help the other person to succeed through learning. The skills and
  9. 9. REMARKABLE LEADERSHIP 9behaviors of great mentors are build rapport, Listen, Build trust, make other connections,maintain focus, remember the purpose of the relationship and offer advices.Focus on Customers: Eikenberry (2007) said, “Your customers, regardless of what you call them, writeyour paycheck” I agree with the author. Every organization has internal customers as wellas external customers. Kevin Eikenberry (2007) had mentioned six specific ways toimprove internal customer services, they are i. Model the value: Thinking of the team as customers might put a new light on the leader’s role. ii. Understand their expectations iii. Innovate collaboratively: Involve everyone participating to improve the work. iv. Foster cross training: Means putting yourself in others shoes. v. Celebrate more broadly: Your group or other group success should be celebrated as one.Building relationship with the customers is very important. According to the author,retaining 5% of loyal customers might boost anywhere from 25% to 125%. There are 5steps to make partnership a reality, no matter the size of the organization i. Set expectations and objectives ii. Consider new behaviors iii. Make new commitments iv. Consider creative alliances v. Share best practicesRemarkable Leaders Influence with Impact:
  10. 10. REMARKABLE LEADERSHIP 10 In this chapter author is trying explain about the skills of a leader toinfluence people. Charisma is one of the important characteristics for the leader toinspire and influence people. Your values are those ideas, beliefs, and concepts thatyou hold most dear and guide your behavior daily (Kevin Eikenberry, 2007).People who have very good values will be much stronger in influencing andinspiring their followers because they grow personal attractiveness that explainscharisma of a leader. Defining your personal values will be the best way to influencepeople. Being influencing will benefit many people and personally even with orwithout rank, seniority and the role (Kevin Eikenberry, 2007).Creditability is the mixture of trustworthiness and expertise. Every leader musthave expertise in his own field because it shapes his personality and creditability.Having very good expertise and knowledge consistently increases influence andcharisma.Remarkable Leaders Think and Act Innovatively: Creativity is one of the aspects of being innovative in work. Thinking habitsand personality types naturally shows hoe a leader thinks and gives an idea abouthis creative thinking. Creativity is one of the major aspects to have in an innovativeleader. Many situations like time pressures, solving errors in critical situationsneeds to have critical and creative thinking experience in tough situations to handletime pressures. The seven ideas that are advised by the author to improve the skills duringbrainstorming sessions are warm-up, set a goal, don’t stop, allow more time, Adapt,modify, steal, save the evaluation and conversation and remember the rules (Kevin
  11. 11. REMARKABLE LEADERSHIP 11Eikenberry, 2007). Different methods for brainstorming methods give differentinformation from the people participating and using different brainstorming toolslike round robin, freewheeling, a hybrid, Slips or private brainstorming and smallgroups will help them to bring out innovative and creative thoughts from theparticipants. Graham Wallas defined four-step process in the book that we wrotecalled The Art of Thought (1949) which is been still used and those four stepsinclude preparation, incubation, inspiration and evaluation. Some of the steps toincrease creative results in the work includes look at problems in different ways,invite other opinions, force relationship by thinking in metaphors, make thoughtsvisible, and make novel combinations (Kevin Eikenberry, 2007). Innovation is the act of putting an idea (or ideas) into action (KevinEikenberry, 2007). Author determined six gets which helps team to get more creativeideas and they are get aligned, get clarified, get organized, get help, get focused, andget over them. There are some kind of risk involved in the change or innovation likeemotional risk which include fear, foolish, blame, mistake and other is logical orrational risks which include idea not working, not able to solve the problem.Remarkable Leaders Value Collaboration and Teamwork: “We just need to help people get along and get to know each other better”(Kevin Eikenberry, 2007). Author says this is how a team has to request for teambuilding. Team performance will improve when all team members come togetherand request for team building and get guidance towards building their team, whichmake them strong as a team and helps in the growth of the organization.The CARB Model:
  12. 12. REMARKABLE LEADERSHIP 12These are the for dimensions which help in the team buildingCommitment to the team and each other: Commitment is powerful; without it, thework of teams won’t be successful as possible (Kevin Eikenberry, 2007). Belief,agreements, trust and support are the critical factors of the commitment to theteam.Alignment and goal agreement: The main reason for the team being lonely isoptimism, omission, and lack of clarity. It takes effort to get a team in alignment withthe organization’s goals and strategies, and it is impossible if those goals andstrategies don’t exist (Kevin Eikenberry, 2007).Relationships among team members: “We need people to get to know each otherbetter” (Kevin Eikenberry, 2007). Relationship in between team members is veryimportant because the stronger the relationship better the results will be. They haveto know each other very well and also they have to be feel free to ask questions toeach other which makes them strong enough to face any difficult taskBehaviors and skills: When you put people together on teams, they will performmore confidently and successfully if they have the right skills (Kevin Eikenberry,2007). People working in teams should have a quality of willing to share orcollaborate. Individuals can solve some problems, sometimes a sub team will tacklea problem, and sometimes the entire team will be required (Kevin Eikenberry, 2007).Willing to continuously learn and improving skills should be in the behaviour of theleader because today’s job will be much difficult tomorrow. Change in technologyand many other things in the world demands everyone to improve more and moreto be the best always in their field.
  13. 13. REMARKABLE LEADERSHIP 13The Leader as a Facilitator: Your role as facilitator is to make it easier for the group to progress towardits goals (Kevin Eikenberry, 2007).The leader is concerned about the content of the meeting; he or she is constantlythinking about what is being said, if ideas being discussed can be achieved, if they fitinto the budget and the implications of these ideas or actions across theorganization or on other projects (Kevin Eikenberry, 2007).A true facilitator isn’t concerned with these questions at all. Rather, the facilitator isconcerned with the process of the meeting; he or she is constantly thinking aboutwhat appending is and how it works toward the successful achievement of themeeting’s desired outcomes (Kevin Eikenberry, 2007).Some of the great skills of a good facilitator-leader are listening, recognizing bothroles, provide suggestions and feedback, provide process structure, keep quiet andobserve without judgment.Problems and decision-making: As quoted by John Dulles, “The measure of success is not whether you have atough problem to deal with, but whether it is the same problem you had last year.”(KevinEikenberry, 2007). In this chapter, the author has made an enlightening effort inilluminating the role of decision-making ability in a leader and the approach to maximizebenefits by tackling the situations.Questioning: According to the author is an important skill to have in a leader, In onesopinion, it is this skill that effects the decision making ability in a leader, as fromquestioning one can explore opportunities to address the issues (Kevin Eikenberry, 2007).
  14. 14. REMARKABLE LEADERSHIP 14Elaborating this fact, the author quotes that” It is the rightful reasons that generate keyquestions”, also the success or the desired outcome can only be achieved by having theright intent (Kevin Eikenberry, 2007). In questioning process it always starts with thepurpose or the intent and ends with the action that we desire to take in answering thequestion (Kevin Eikenberry, 2007). Problem- Solving is another skill set, according to the author is a must haveability in a leader, the author went on to elaborate in a four step model, The PDCA cycle(Kevin Eikenberry, 2007). It includes the “Planning step” followed by the “To Do stage”,next is the “Check step” and finally the “Act step”( Kevin Eikenberry, 2007). Amongthese steps it is the Planning stage, which has a substantial weight age and importance incomparison to the others, it determines the out comes and guides the next followingstages. As quoted by the author, “ During his corporate training sessions in Chevron hetaught a seven step model, out of, which four were in the planning stage”, here the authoris once again trying to stress the point “Planning” as a crucial phase in problem solving.Approach and Strategies: In here the author talks about the “Famous four”approaches/Strategies.” Independent, Consultative, Collaborative, Consensus.”In the whole the author has put immense stress on the importance “Delegating, Values,Data and Intuition”(Kevin Eikenberry, 2007) he termed these as some of the key decisivefactors having an impact on the leadership abilities of a person.Responsibility and Accountability: “To be accountable is to be answerable, liable orresponsible”(Kevin Eikenberry, 2007). In this account the author is reiterating the factthat “ If you want to be a remarkable leader, you must take accountabilityseriously”(Kevin Eikenberry, 2007). In a follow through to the above quote, the author
  15. 15. REMARKABLE LEADERSHIP 15beautifully explained the importance of “Personal Accountability” with his personalexperience in a conference room, he quoted “ There is no they. You are they. Until youtake personal and collective responsibility for what is in your control, you wont move thisorganization to where you want it to be.” (Kevin Eikenberry, 2007) Elaborating theabove fact, the author discussed about the two factors, which get in the way of personallyaccountability “Blame and being a Victim”. In accordance to the author, Delegating isanother aspect of interest, which has its own “pushers and blockers”, in his opinion thebiggest barriers are the personal beliefs, values, habits, finally you (Kevin Eikenberry,2007). The author then went on to replace “Delegation “ with “Sharing responsibility” healso quoted “Remarkable leaders don’t delegate; they share responsibility” (KevinEikenberry, 2007), as he believes it will give a new dimensional approach and improvethe overall efficiency. Coupled with “Delegation” the author tried to shift the focus on“Empowerment” He states “Delegation is done to people and Empowerment is done withpeople” (Kevin Eikenberry, 2007). The author then categorized empowerment where itdepends on the boundaries, Resources and Latitude (Kevin Eikenberry, 2007). Culturalaccountability is another important term, where the author stressed the fact that “In anyorganization, it is the sum of all the people, which makes up the organization as a whole,so holding the people around you accountable will ultimately lead to a domino effect,where every individual will in fact become accountable to their actions in theorganization, thereby changing the cultural dimensions.Project and Process Management: In account to these aspects, the author tried todifferentiate both project from process management, as these two sets of managementabilities go hand in hand. In leaders, the ability to lead the project from the front makes
  16. 16. REMARKABLE LEADERSHIP 16them remarkable (Kevin Eikenberry, 2007). The author went on explaining aboutdifferent project management skills. In comparison to the project the process is the stepinvolved in carrying out the project successfully, they often involve various parameters,such as the consumers, suppliers and other key contributors. “Remarkable leaders oftensupport and enable process improvement” (Kevin Eikenberry, 2007).Goals and support: In here the author quoted the famous speech of then President of theUnited States, John F. Kennedy, the speech was about putting the first man on the moon,he was a goal setter and after careful assessment set this bold goal, he was an aggressiveand a remarkable leader of that time, having set the humongous task of putting the firstman on moon, the president worked towards making the goal a reality and was successfulin achieving it. It was evident, without setting a bold goal, it would have never beenpossible to achieve something of this magnitude in those times (Kevin Eikenberry, 2007).The above example of the president clearly states the importance of goal setting in onespursuit towards becoming a remarkable leader, later the author gave some key pointers inregard to goal-setting involving the size, belief, investment, action and commitments,these five aspects play a key role in ones mind-set (Kevin Eikenberry, 2007). In his bookthe author went a step ahead and gave some key pointer towards personal goal setting asfollowing.Step 1: DreamStep 2: Tangible goal statementStep 3: List the benefits you’ll acquireStep 4: Identify the barriersStep 5: Resources required
  17. 17. REMARKABLE LEADERSHIP 17Step 6: Need to learnStep 7: Set a dateStep 8: Commitment In here the author reiterates the importance of personal goal setting in a leaderslife. As a leader he should be a vision creator, and lead the organization from fore front,In this book the author discussed about the importance and role of a leader in having avisionary mind, he should be a motivator and a guide to other subordinates and help themreach their personal milestones in life done in a collaborative way (Kevin Eikenberry,2007). As a leader, he should be ever ready to lend support and play an important role inassisting other individual’s reach their goals.The power of alignment: In his book the author has also mentioned upon the importanceof alignment of goals in comparison to one individual and the organization (KevinEikenberry, 2007). It is the linkage between an individual’s goal and the organizations,which makes the company successful. To help us out the author gave several ways toensure alignment, which include Understanding, Ask, Create, Identify, Make, Question,and Eliminate. The author has also gave detailed description about the process involvedin goal setting, they are as follows, Having a clear picture, Communication, Investmentof time, Enthusiasm and finally tracking the progress (Kevin Eikenberry, 2007). Finally itis this ability of a leader to set goals and support, which ultimately pay dividends to theorganization.
  18. 18. REMARKABLE LEADERSHIP 18Reference:Eikenberry. K, (2007). Remarkable Leadership, Publication: John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Edition 2007, printed in San Francisco, USA.