I couldn’t believe my eyes when my 2-year old daughter grabbed the iPad from my hands, flicked through it until she found her favorite game, started playing and when she was done, she switched off the iPad and handed it back to me!
The question is, “What is the relation between this and leadership?”
I believe that it is not fair to consider someone like Steve Jobs a leader. He is a hero!
He didn’t just influence his organization, he influenced entire generations (including my 2- year old daughter) and envisioned products that revolutionized our lives.
In my opinion…
Leaders influence organizations.
But heroes influence generations.
The economic challenges nowadays require leaders who are courageous, different and crazy enough to pursue new pathways that can revolutionize the way we are working and living our lives. We are in deep need for more heroic leaders like Steve Jobs.
The #1 trait of heroic leaders is that they invest a lot in training the next generation of leaders.
At a certain point, heroic leaders, like Steve Jobs, Bill Gates and others, take a step back and handover the leadership and authority to people they trust.
Here are 7 quick ideas on how you can train the next generation:
1. Unleash their passions. Passion is king. Without passion, there is no next generation leadership. Don’t qualify a person for leading the way in the future based on his/her experience only. If he/she is not passionate, then he doesn’t qualify for leadership, PERIOD.
2. Engage them in new projects. Let them be involved in every step from idea to implementation.
3. Let them turn an existing project into a more valuable and scalable one.
4. Enrol them in customized coaching/mentoring programs to develop their skills and boost their individual strengths.
5. Give them frequent and constructive feedback.
6. Focus on their strengths and develop them. Train them in what they are already good at and they will become super heroes. In my opinion, training to improve weaknesses is a guaranteed waste of money.
Peter Drucker, the legendary management guru, once said, “Strengthen your strengths so that your weaknesses become irrelevant.” When you focus on the strengths of your team, you will evoke the best inside them automatically.
7. Create a place that has a good Karma. A place with ultimate justice, positive vibes and special care for your people. Make them love the place and feel happy and stress-free working for the company.
If you focus NOW on training the next generation of leaders, then you will guarantee the continuation of success for your company and maintaining market leadership.