Self-development towards executive effectiveness must be learned and practiced. How often and how well do you practice the following habits? We define habits as the synergy of knowledge, experience, skill, and motivation. Take time to reflect on each item in the PBC leader’s checklist. Then rate yourself on a scale of zero to 10. Zero means you never perform that action, while a rating of 10 means you can recall numerous occasions when you leveraged this habit to the benefit of your business.
0 (Never).. 2 .. 4 .. 5 (sometimes).. 6 .. 7 .. 8 (frequent).. 9 .. 10 (a habit)
Effective Leadership Checklist: How often and how well do you…
1. ______ Do what needs to be done, mindfully? Do you turn off all notifications to avoid distraction? Or do you “belong” to everybody and head an organization that is full of specializations and silos? Are you the executive leader of an “island” business?
2. ______ Prioritize your goals and work on them mindfully one at a time? Do you do the important, i.e., the productive things first? Focus on not multitasking!
3. ______ Do only what is right for your organization, because you “begin with the end in mind,” your vision from which all strategies and objectives flow?
4. ______ Proactively manage your time, keeping a detailed diary and developing action plans from the base of knowing exactly where your time is going? Do you prune the unproductive activities and link together useful blocks of discretionary time?
5. ______ Focus on your people, supporting others without removing their responsibility through communication, teamwork, developing others, and self-development?
6. ______ Lead effective meetings with clear objectives, the right people, a focused agenda, and shared outcomes in the form of “who will do what by when”?
7. ______ Listen empathically with a view to understanding before taking action? Do you know your own biases and question your paradigms or assumptions?
8. ______ Have proven standard operating procedures for communication and decision-making? Most things that happen have happened before and do not require reimagining. Rather, apply established rules, general principles, and procedures. A good algorithm or a detailed work instruction can free up your time for leading people.
9. ______ Are you “future-minded”? Do you have “eyes on the prize” of your vision and not allow obstacles to block your view? Do you look on change as something to explore rather than ignore and resist? Are you learning every day, because if you aren’t, your business isn’t either?
10. ______ Recruit only for strengths and delegate to challenge? Do you make work engaging to let people’s strengths shine through? Effective delegation is more like handing over stewardship than it is handing over tasks.
11. ______ Maintain your body and mind so as to not only be productive today and tomorrow, but also way into the future?
Total Score: _____
So, there they are: 11 habitual actions that make for a truly effective business leader. Thought-provoking, aren’t they?