The Three Variables of Leadership
There are a lot of theories on what it takes to be an effective leader. Here’s an interesting one that I heard recently from an experienced senior executive who was a guest speaker in one of our Next Level Leadership® group coaching programs for high potential leaders.
This executive’s perspective is that effective leadership is about getting things done and that getting things done boils down to the effective management of three variables – time, money and resources.
Agree? Disagree? Take a quick look at where he’s coming from on each and weigh in with your take.
Time: This variable comes in two forms – the amount of hours you have in a week or a month and the deadline you set for getting something done. There’s nothing you can do about the hours in a week. You might have options on the deadline.
Money: In terms of getting things done, money gives you a range of choices. When it comes to acquiring the expertise you need to get something done, you can buy, you can rent or you can build. Which path you choose will depend on the amount of money that’s available to you and any constraints on acquiring expertise that the deadline imposes.
Resources: In this executive’s view, resources is a synonym for people. Ultimately, it’s people who get things done and the leader’s job is to mobilize and motivate them to do that. The most important resource you have to manage as a leader is yourself. If you can’t explain a problem and a solution to yourself, it’s highly unlikely that you’ll be able to successfully do so for others.
So what do you think? How do the three variables of leadership match up with your experience? Do they cover the basics? What important elements of leadership do they miss?