Leadership alignment

Could it be possible that leadership alignment is a great goal to aspire towards but one that is probably very difficult to attain?  Think about it.  Let’s say that the CEO is surrounded by a team of 7 executive leaders.  The absolute ideal would be that they all feel a great sense of common purpose, that they all agree on the best way to achieve this, that they all speak to their teams and departments with one voice, that they all promote one vision and that they are all great role models of one set of company values.

Let’s Get Real About Leadership Alignment!

Just as misalignment in our bodies can cause us pain and discomfort physically, mentally and emotionally, so leadership misalignment causes pain to people working in the company.  It splits the energy, the focus, the culture, the spirit and the power of the company.  But then I believe that smart leaders know this.  It seems, though, that the power of the ego appears to be stronger than the power of their ability to do something fundamentally different about alignment.   Am I being too harsh?

Let me say that I am certainly not advocating that companies should have leaders who are clones of each other.  I am, however, advocating that while each leader will have a different style of leadership, they will still all send the same messages to employees; they will all follow the same roadmap, albeit executed in their own unique way.   I am suggesting that no matter who their leader is, employees listening to them and watching them in different parts of the business will all be getting the same sense of purpose and the same message about where they are going, how they intend to get there and what’s in it for them to fully commit.

Why is this So Difficult to Achieve?

Confused?Here’s my perception of what gets in the way of this true leadership alignment.  I would love to hear if you agree or disagree?

As human beings we all have our own personal insights, perceptions, ideas, goals and dreams, for ourselves and for the company.  Leadership alignment is about genuinely sharing these and crafting common goals and dreams that will build the business. This means that true alignment is based on authentic, open and honest relationships.  Leadership teams like to believe that they are behaving in this way, but truth be told, too often they are not.  They sit in meetings, nod their heads at appropriate moments, say what they believe others want to hear and what will keep them safe in their positions– and then go out and speak and behave according to their own goals and personal agendas.

Have You Seen This Happen?

If I am correct about this, then the challenge becomes one of identifying, recruiting and developing leaders who have the spirit and maturity to:

  1. Confidently and openly share their personal agendas and business insights.
  2. Work honestly towards integrating their personal agendas with the corporate goals.
  3. Release those personal agendas that do not fit with their leadership role and the goals of the business.

I would really like to hear if you believe this is possible and if you have actually experienced this or seen this happen.



Leave a Reply




You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>