According to Harvard Business Review (https://hbr.org/2013/12/the-focused-leader), a focused leader is not the person concentrating on the three most important priorities of the year, or the most brilliant systems thinker, or the one most in tune with the corporate culture. Focused leaders can command the full range of their own attention: They are in touch with their inner feelings, they can control their impulses, they are aware of how others see them, they understand what others need from them, they can weed out distractions and allow their minds to roam widely, free of preconceptions.
It is not IQ or Knowledge that makes leaders leaders. That is not truly the fine ingredient of becoming a focused leader.
It is the emotional intelligence(EQ): (1) Self-awareness, (2) Cognitive Control (AKA Self-Control), and (3) Empathy (the ability to understand others’ feelings, emotional states, and their needs/desires). Even if you graduated with the world’s best degree from top university or read 10,000 books and patented 1000 ideas, it doesn’t help if you can communicate with others – “Effectively”, “Engage” and “Encourage”.
Knowledge can assist in developing strong leadership but it is not the major ingredient of leadership because humans are “emotional” creatures, not a logic-based robots or computer systems. Historical leaders have led people because people saw “Hope”, “Belief in Better Life”, “Positivism”, “Encouragement”, “Empathy”, “Fulfilling Meaning”, and many emotional sentiments that relate with their own experience/life from the leaders’ speeches. Even key decisions are often persuaded by someone’s gut feeling or six senses – meaning the decision was felt right or wrong.
People with EQ leadership deeply understand that leadership is not enforced, tyrannically shown, or advertised. Senior management with high ego, micromanagement madness, unnecessary bureaucratic policies, blaming employees attitude, pointing fingers, dishonesty, lack of transparency, and disengaged employees are all the major signs of troubled leadership. (Source:http://www.business2community.com/human-resources/10-company-culture-killers-infographic-01217015) Highly EQ based leaders understand that, at the end of the day, people are the ones making the decisions, implementing ideas, solving problems, and executing the answers. Therefore, EQ leaders engage and encourage people’s involvement into building new solutions – not directly put leaders input and ignore front-line employees’ practical daily problems. Some of the most innovative companies have built bottom-up idea innovation, and have given managers some bureaucratic power to make smart practical decisions.
To The High Ego Boss(es):
Trust in people to do their jobs since you hired them after going through multiple job posts and interviews. Encourage your employees, not enforce them. Hire the right people for the right motivations, not just for skills, money or achievements or likability or looks. Motivation, the sense of emotional purpose, defies all other skills and history factors and can topple down even mountains of facts. Why? Because if you can talk about what we believe in, then you’ve touched our hearts, minds, and souls. Any skills are learn-able, and even a monkey can imitate someone’s job by following standard of procedures or just copying motions. But you can’t codify motivation because there is no standard of procedures or formula to build motivation. It is and always will be either be present or not present in the person’s atmosphere. (And if you really want to know if you hired the right employees, then watch what they do when they are not instructed of anything. Motivated individuals work for themselves, not for the project or money or goals. So they will always try to make a difference – For motivated employees, work isn’t just about money that drives them to do what they do best. It’s about their self-belief in their life view and their actions.)