Once you are crystal clear on your objective successful leaders develop a plan. This is where a leader has to step up and take charge.
Here’s the important thing to remember. A plan is nothing more than a series of small steps taking you in the direction of your objective. Start with an outline of the plan. Then look at each section in the outline and divide it up into smaller sections.
At some point you get down to a detail level of a series of small steps. You know the steps are small enough when you gut says – that step is easy – I can do that.
Another important thing to remember is that you may not be an expert at every part of the plan. It’s advisable to call in the expert or other knowledgeable members of your team and get them to help with some sections of the plan. Just remember as the leader it is expected that you are in charge and will steer the process in the direction you want it to go.
It’s OK, in fact is advisable to get input and even develop alternate plans with outside help and help from those around you. Don’t let the discussion drag on to long as it often happens in committees. At some point a decision has to be made, made decisively and without dragging it out for too long a period of time. That decision is the leaders’ responsibility!
Good leaders will weigh the facts, assess the alternatives and make a decision quickly. All the info and all the facts may never be available. Indecision can be a morale killer and a determent to a good leader. No leader is going to be right 100% of the time and there is no rule that says a plan cannot be modified and changed later. Don’t rely on too much group consensus, limit discussion and take action. Know what you have decided and communicate it clearly.
By the way now is an excellent time to appoint a second in command as part of your plan.
Leadership is knowing there is a time for action. And a plan is nothing more than a series of small steps, defined in advance, that take you in the direction of your objective. The smaller the steps, the greater the detail, the clearer it will be and the easier it will be to explain to your team. There has to be a balance here between perfection and getting the job done. Don’t be afraid to take the first step.
Expect to succeed.
Have confidence (even if it is an act). No one will follow someone who does not exude confidence. Be a champion.
You’re the leader. Show confidence in your plan to those around you!
Leadership success action question – What Is My Plan?
By Andrew Clapton