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A True Leaders’ Realization

Posted on the 31 January 2014 by Hreric @myhreric

Image from www.activegarage.com

Image from www.activegarage.com

The Chinese New Year celebrated today somehow gave me enough time to read research papers and scan pages of an e-book I got interested.  As I was already fixated and engrossed at my reading, an email popped out.

The email, coming from someone I really don’t know said he came across my article on “Juan and the Carabao in the Organization.”  He said he would like to comment on it but somehow would like to message me directly and share his thoughts and experiences instead through an email.  He continued to say that I can share his insights should I find it useful, for which I realized it is worth my effort to write and share it.

He had worked in the corporate world for almost three decades prior to his retirement and this gained him enough realization that his life and the way he does his work in the organization should be driven not just by the business but as well as the understanding and harmonious relationship among the people he work with.

As a leader, he goes to continue, one should take time to look into his own self before he can understand the dynamics with which the people in the organization interplays.  Just as complex managing and leading people is, so does, or perhaps even more complex is the understanding of the self.

A leader can not give what he doesn’t have.  He can not move people if he himself can not move his own.  Thus, for leadership to be effective, a leader must first overcome and learn to manage his self.  He goes further to share that at one point in his career as a manager, an eye opener happened.

He came to work with a very competent, talented, energetic and a person oozing with leadership.  This new hire’s charisma is eating his presence in the organization.  People in the department is so amazed by him, his wit, his way of doing things effectively and efficiently and in the manner he deals with people who are difficult to deal with.

This threatens his existence as the Department Head and sooner or later, his security over his position was at stake should he not do his job well.  Because this young man can be the new boss sooner.  Thus, just as incompetence and immaturity on his side as the leader consumes his becoming effective in people handling.

Conflict soon arises as this new leader is becoming more assertive in embracing the organizations’ business and its processes that on many occasions, he seemed to know more than he knows and the manner he solved difficult situations seemed so easy as compared to how he had dealt with it for months.

In the end, they clashed.  This managers’ ego was stretched and his esteem fell too fast that this clouded his way of thinking and assessing his emotions.  While the new hire managed to be as objective and straight forward, he was sulking in the idea that he was overpowering him and that his strong personality doesn’t fit the organizations culture.

In the end, he let go of the new hire too easily by pointing out his mistakes by emphasizing on culture misfit.  The new hire, while expressing his view that he can still work at his best despite what happened decided to leave, figuring that a close-minded leader whose personal interest clouds his ability to manage and lead his people will be best solved when he is gone in the organization.  Not even worried he will be unemployed because he knows fully well that he can easily find one given his positive disposition, leadership skills, his vast experience and eagerness to learn.

The resignation brought a total change in the department.  The effect of the loss was greatly seen in series of backlogs and problems which could have been easily addressed by the new hires capabilities.  The Department Manager realized that he had difficulty meeting the objectives because of many tasks that could have been accomplished should the new hire did not resigned.  The Department Manager had difficulty rallying his people, bringing out their best and working as a team.

It was the turning point of his being an executive, as a leader.  It was then that he had to re-examine how he failed to manage the situation and resolved the conflict with objectivity and maturity.  He realized that one has to manage the ego and esteem if one truly wants to be a leader.

At present, he is retired.  Looking back, that act of realization had made him earn the highest position in the corporate ladder.  He became President prior to his retirement.

He said he will never forget that guy whom opened his eyes to the truth that leadership is beyond managing people,  it is effectively managing ones self. It is setting aside your personal interest and work effectively with others to achieve the business objectives.  It is not about the leader, but the people and organization that is over and above anything else.

Leadership is not about competing with other leaders and proving who is better.  It is not letting go people too easily without exhausting all means to develop them.  It’s not about easing immediately a conflict by letting people go.  It is about opening your mind and closing your heart to emotions that clouds objectivity, creative problem solving and maturity.

Now that he is retired and enjoying the benefits of his hard work, he is hoping that someday, he will come to meet again the guy who opened a new horizon for him to apologize and thank him for a wonderful realization and a life changing event that shaped up what he is now today.

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