How These Nine Expectations Were Determined
Through more than 20
in leadership development and executive coaching, I have learned that a leader does not have to excel in all 86 indicators on a leadership assessment tool to get the most from his or her people. If a leader is top-
in all nine of the behaviors I have outlined, people usually will work just as hard for him or her—indeed sometimes harder— despite that leader’s lack of
skills or strategic planning
Although I have
a lot of knowledge directly from the near 3,000 leaders I have coached, I have perhaps learned the most from those
’ followers, peers, and bosses.
What does this leader do that’s particularly effective? What could he or she improve? What’s getting in his or her way of being great?
No one would argue with the fact that great leaders need vision, competence, and determination. What distinguished the outstanding leaders, however, the ones who made people feel so much passion for their work, the ones whose people were able to say, “I’d go to hell and back for my boss,” always came back to the nine behaviors of credibility.
that what people expect from leaders is usually rooted in the basic interpersonal operation of the leader follower relationship, where personal connections are made through trust, reliability, care, and
. Once this platform was built well and
, leaders could deliver the rest of what they had to offer—their talents—and business flourished. However, when leaders did not succeed in building this platform by meeting the nine expectations, the connection with followers was weak, and there was little chance to move to a higher level of effectiveness and success. Many leaders I have worked with, on recognizing their faulty platform, took action to improve. They
their credibility, made powerful connections with people, and were more effective. Their stories are in this book.
The people who work for and with the CEOs, senior managers, and entrepreneurs I have coached have made it clear that meeting these nine expectations is a basic requirement for successful working relationships and that skipping over these basics and working on something else instead— becoming a masterful change agent or a more powerful orator, for example—will be like rearranging the deck chairs on the
This means that I tell leaders: “If you want to work on listening skills while you have a reputation for straying from the truth, well, it’s not going to work.” Or “No matter how you improve your delegation skills, you still won’t be effective if your followers don’t see you as someone who keeps his or her promises.”
I have surveyed more than 2300 executives, and 99 percent of the respondents say that credibility is more important than ever before. And if you had it and then lost it, 92 percent say that it would be very difficult to gain it back. Certainly the tarnished reputations and lost careers of
, corporate executives, and priests have reminded us how fragile credibility can be.
Over the years, I have partnered in various leadership projects with Kim Jackson, chairman of Assessment Plus. Since l984, Assessment Plus (www.assessmentplus.com) has provided survey-
services to both large and small corporations, including Oracle, BMW, Sun Microsystems, Coca-Cola Enterprises, Inc., Merck, Pfizer, Norrell, Verizon, and Cox Communications. Services include organizational and individual (360-degree feedback) assessments, survey development and design, administration, data collection, report design and production, coaching, and consulting. Two of Assessment Plus’s officers who are also
executive coaches—Jennifer Taylor, president, and Dr. Karen Walker, director of client solutions—share the ideas behind this book and gave access to a vast database of thousands of executives who have participated in surveys. Those data are included throughout this book and affirm the importance of the nine behaviors to leadership success. Also with the help of Taylor and Walker and the staff at Assessment Plus, I have developed a 360-degree leadership assessment—
Transparency Edge 360
tied to the nine behaviors that are already being used in corporations and businesses.