Great leaders know their principles, their beliefs, and ethics. Now, perhaps more than ever, we need leaders who are grounded in a set of principles that makes them trustworthy and worthy of our dedication. Leaders generate dedication and loyalty based on their adherence to principles.
This course is for all leaders, those aspiring to leadership, and for entrepreneurs who have the golden opportunity to create a culture that will attract the best talent and promote high performing teams.
The purpose of this course is not to prescribe principles, but to offer for consideration and discussion, a set of nine principles upon which transformational leadership can be based. Your personal brand, and the brand equity of your organization is trustworthiness that can only be established by the consistent adherence to worthy principles. This brand equity is the basis of both career success and corporate success in the marketplace. It is an asset.
The instructor has more than forty years coaching leaders and leading cultural transformation in dozens of Fortune 100 companies like Corning, Shell Oil Company, 3M, Xerox and others. He is the author of ten books on leadership.
There are many important leadership skills - strategy execution, leading teams, designing organizations - however, there is something more fundamenta, something that is the core of leadership and it is the heart and soul of the leader. All great leaders are grounded in principles that cause them to be trusted by followers.
For most of our life on this planet we worked in small and intimate groups - the hunting party or the family farm. This was the "natural" way of getting work done, until the industrial revolution, large organizations in large buildings with specialized work. Intimacy and trust were lost. Our challenge now is to recreate organization that instill trust and social intimacy. This can only be accomplished by a dedication to principles that create unity, common purpose, and trust.
Countries are founded on principles such as freedom of religion, speach, and press. But, principles alone are not enough. Those principles must be embedded into the structure and systems of the organization or country. The nature of structure, the flow of information, the systems of motivation, are all designed based on an understanding of principles.
Principles are the foundation for the entire process of wealth creation. There are five forms of capital, one leading to the next: Spiritual capital, social capital, human capital, innovation capital and financial capital. Without a firm grounding in principles wealth is not likely to be achieved or sustained.
Spiritual Capital is the pursuit of a worthy purpose that creates collective energy. This is the first act of leadership that unites the energy and effort of others toward common purpose. It is the Word that is in the beginning.
There are two key elements of spiritual capital - a worthy purpose and a dedication to a set of values.
Social Capital a set of values or norms shared among members of a group that permits cooperation among them. If members of the group come to expect that others will behave reliably and honestly, then they will come to trust one another. Trust is like a lubricant that makes the running of any group or organization more efficient.
“One of the most important lessons we can learn from an examination of economic life is that a nation’s well-being, as well as its ability to compete, is conditioned by a single, pervasive cultural characteristic: the level of trust inherent in the society.” Francis Fukuyama
“As a rough rule of thumb, if you belong to no groups but decide to join one, you cut your risk of dying over the next year in half. If you smoke and belong to no groups, it’s a toss-up statistically whether you should stop smoking or start joining.” Robert Putnum, Bowling Alone
We all have a need to confirm our self-worth. Self-worth cannot be achieved in the absence of a sense of contribution to some higher purpose. Leaders fulfill this need. They communicate purpose to those who follow. The ability to communicate a valued purpose is a rare art among corporate managers. Achieving return on equity does not, as a goal, mobilize the most noble forces in our souls. The most successful companies have defined their aims in terms of product or service and benefits to customers in a manner that can inspire and motivate their employees. Most corporations do serve a worthy purpose. Individuals seek to identify with it. The competitive leader will make the connection between our souls and our work, and will benefit from the energies released.
Our corporations maintain the traditions of a class society. We maintain the distinctions of management, labor, salary-hourly wage; exempt, nonexempt, thinker, doer. They are all false distinctions, the old, useless baggage of a deceased society, carried forward into a new world. We live in an age of unity, of integration, when distinctions that disunite and limit people are inherently counterproductive. There are other traditions from our past to which management must return. There was a time when ownership and identity with the job were a source of pride. The industrial age, with the anonymity of mass production, swung the pendulum from ownership to alienation. The electronic age, with its emphasis on information, the flexibility of information technologies, and the psychological needs for community, identify, and a source of personal worth, will swing the pendulum back toward ownership. The competitive corporation will accept the value of fully involving the individual in its workings and decision making so that he or she again feels in unity with and ownership for his work.
Unity within the organization is a function of many things. It is, in part, a function of the worthy purpose articulated by the leader of the organization. It is also a result of the habits, the culture of the organization. Those habits and culture are in large part a direct response to the nature of the organizational systems, structure, skills, symbols, style and stories.
One of Honda America Manufacturing’s principles is to create unity among associates, with the company, and with customers. Read the attached case study and consider how they employ each of the six S’s to create a culture of unity.
Then ask yourself, “What can we do, in our organization, to create greater unity within and with our customers?” Use the following chart and discuss this with your study circle.
Decision making in our organizations has become dominated by a concern for legalisms, regulations, and precedents. Integrity is the foundation upon which must be built all other values, and upon which rest the trust and relationship between individual and corporation. The ability to discriminate between what is honest and what lacks honesty is a skill that is critical to the establishment of the new corporate culture. We live in a society of law and legalism in which the lawyer has become the corporate high priest of right and wrong. That which is honest has become confused with that which is permissible by law. Our managers and corporations generally adhere to what is legal. However, the law does not specify what is right, and it is a poor guide to making the decisions that will establish trust and unity between individuals and organizations, between customers and suppliers. These relationships have deteriorated to the point where they represent a drag not only on productivity within major corporations but also on their ability to market their products in this country. When managers are able to discern and act on that which is honest in spirit, trustful business relationships will be reestablished.
Arrogance is the enemy of learning. Humility the lubricating spirit that enables individuals and organizations to learn, reflect on strengthens and weaknesses and make continuous progress. Arrogant leaders may create obedience, but never genuine loyalty or devotion. Humle leaders bring out the best in their team members and in the organization.
“Companies succeed only if customers want their products, employees want to work for them, suppliers want them as partners, shareholders want to buy their stock, and communities want their presence. Figuring out how to maintain these relationships is the central challenge of corporate leadership.” HBR May-June 2017, p 58.
The job of the company leader to recognise the need to serve all these stakeholders.
§Not a place to be…not a position, award, status, or achievement.
§It is never a “condition of ease”, but rather the “creative dissatisfaction” of the pursuit itself!
§It is not a note of music or the applause, but the melody, the rhythm that is sustained. Don’t look for “it”, listen to the music.
§It is a never ending process of growth, of learning, of emergence, of challenge.
§It is the spirit within, the spirit of life that turns an acorn into an oak tree.
While "engagement" has become associated with short lived programs, the instructor describes how engagement must become a fundamental belief and a system of management in the organizatiion. High performing organizations are designed into team structures that enable the ownership of work processes every day, by every employee.
§Knowledge comes from “sensing”, emphasizes the role of empirical evidence, rather than tradition, ideology or theory.
§It is based on experimentation and evidence.
§It is the foundation of human progress over the past two hundred years.
§All managers should be SCIENTISTS!
§What is the data telling us?
§What experiment have we conducted or can we conduct?
§What have others learned that should inform our decisions.
"The wave of the future is not the conquest of the world by a single dogmatic creed but the liberation of the diverse energies of free nations and free men." John F. Kennedy
For the past forty years Lawrence M. Miller has worked to improve the performance of organizations and the skills of their leaders. His expertise is derived from hands on experience creating change in the culture of hundreds of organizations.
He began his work in youth prisons after recognizing that the learning system in the organization had exactly the opposite of its intended effect – increasing, rather than decreasing, dysfunctional behavior. For four years he worked to redesign the prison system by establishing the first free-economy behind prison walls, where each inmate had to pay rent, maintain a checking account, and pay for everything he desired. This was his first application of organizational transformation.
He has been consulting, writing and speaking about business organization and culture since 1973. After ten years with another consulting firm, he formed his own firm, the Miller Howard Consulting Group in 1983. In 1998 he sold his firm to Towers Perrin, an international human resource consulting firm and became a Principal of that firm. In 1999 he left that firm to focus on solo consulting projects.
He and his firm were one of the early proponents of team-based management and worked with many clients to implement Team Management from the senior executive team to include every level and every employee in the organization. The Team Management process created a company of business managers, with every employee focused on continuous improvement of business performance. In addition to directing the overall change process, Mr. Miller personally coached the senior management team of many of his clients.
The implementation of Team Management led to the realization that the whole-system of the organization needed to be redesigned to create alignment so all systems, structure, skills, style and symbols support the same goals and culture. From this realization he developed the process of Whole System Architecture that is a high involvement method of rethinking all of the systems, structures and culture of the organization. Among his consulting clients have been 3M, Corning, Shell Oil Company, Amoco and Texaco, Shell Chemicals, Air Canada and Varig Airlines, Eastman Chemicals, Xerox, Harris Corporation, McDonald's and Chick-fil-A, Merck and Upjohn Pharmaceuticals, United Technologies, Metropolitan Life and Landmark Communications.
Mr. Miller has authored ten books, among them American Spirit: Visions of A New Corporate Culture, which was the text for Honda of America's course on their values and culture; and Barbarians to Bureaucrats: Corporate Life Cycle Strategies, which draws on the history of the rise and fall of civilizations to illustrate the patterns of leadership and evolution in corporate cultures. Most recently he authored Getting to Lean – Transformational Change Management that draws on the best change management practices such as socio-technical system design, appreciative inquiry, and systems thinking or learning organizations to provide a road map to transforming organizations. He has also authored Team Kata - Your Guide to Becoming A High Performing Team, the core human process of lean organizations. Most recently he published The Lean Coach that corresponds to his course on Coaching Leaders for Success. He has appeared on the Today Show, CNN, made numerous appearances on CNBC, has written for The New York Times and been the subject of a feature story in Industry Week magazine.