Transformational Leadership

Leadership & Organisational Health

Many years ago when I was a Principal of a secondary school in the East, I noted that many parents who wanted to send their children to a school would ask the question, “Who is the Principal?” It appeared that these parents must have read or instinctively understand John Maxwell’s comments on “Leadership”.

Maxwell has this to say about Leadership: “Everything rises and falls on leadership”. To further affirm the importance of leadership, I would like to share one of my favourite quotes (author unknown): “A group of sheep led by lions is better than a group of lions led by sheep”.

If leadership is so important, what exactly do leaders do & how can they do those things better? Without sounding simplistic, I would like to state that the most important role of leaders is that they lead and inspire people to bring about positive outcomes for their people and their organisations. In the process, they build a community with shared beliefs, habits and behaviour (culture).

If leaders are going to directly influence organizational culture, a good question that leaders should ask is: “What’s my current organizational health?”

When a person does a health check, the doctor usually measures blood pressure and this is used as one indicator of good health. I would like to introduce the concept of an Index as a measure of organizational health.

With index as an indicator, leaders should take a reality check (Confronting the Brutal Truth), and ask how high is his organisational’s a) Learning Index (LI); b) Innovation Index (II); c)
Competency Index (CI); d) Happiness Index (HI); e) Productivity Index (PI) & f) Reproduction Index (RI).

After the leader has collected some information about his organisational index, the leader needs to ask how well his leadership/management team fare on those index/indices and whether there’s a correlation between the organisational’s health & the leaders’/managers’ health.

A simple word about those indices and why they are important. All of us know that for organizations to thrive in a highly competitive globalised world, organizations must continuously Learn (LI), Innovate (II), Be Competent (CI), Be Great & Happy Places to Work (HI), Be Highly Productive & value-added (PI); Renew their leadership & staff (RI).

So, how does your organization fare on those Indices? How do your leadership & management team fare in learning, innovating, renewal, production and creating happy places to work in?

Asking the above questions will give the leader a good starting point for him to think, plan and act strategically, & eventually create, transform & build his organization from the current reality to her desired future.

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