THE PSYCHOLOGY OF LEADERSHIP – Understanding the influence of inspirational leaders (PART II)

THE 8 ASCENTS OF THE ULTIMATE LEADER (Continued from Part I) are the Psychological foundations of what makes a great Leader, they are…

1. Master Your Rules of Engagement

• In War, “Rules of Engagement” are what you do when you engage the enemy.

• The enemy in this case is experience of when your surroundings don’t match your perception of ‘what should be’

• Psychological “Rules of Engagement” exist as reaction responses to these surroundings and the experiences, if you become more aware of what they are, you will have a foundation to influence your actions and reactions, you will Master your Rules of Engagement

2. Increase Your Circle of Tolerance

• This is the measure of your ability to deal with things “intelligently” and without reaction. The more rules you have about the way things should be, the smaller your Circle of Tolerance

• If you have a large Circle of Tolerance, you can deal with more situations intelligently and make better decisions.

• Things that happen outside of your Circle of Tolerance usually trigger your Rules of Engagement

3. Remove Your Colored glasses

• There are 4 primary “Brain Processors” that interpret the world in very different ways. A “Colored Brain” perception is like looking though colored glasses. A leader who can remove his colored glasses, can see past his own perceptions and bring out the best in others who process differently.

• To discover what colored glasses you are wearing, take the complementary Colored Brain Communication Inventory (CBCI) at the Directive Communication website.

4. Stop Need Sucking

• When we are in charge of others (and sometimes when not), we unconsciously make decisions that leave others questioning our motives or are left unfulfilled in their jobs or tasks. This is because each person has specific emotional needs and gratifications that doing or completing a task provides. When someone takes those gratifications away (even accidently) this is “Need Sucking”

• To stop Need Sucking, leaders must take care not to take too much of the following emotional needs from a group:

i. Control or security (the less control one has, the less secure)

ii. Recognition or significance

iii. Diversity in tasks or job

iv. Sense of completion or achievement (let people finish)

• The more of these emotional gratifications a leader takes for themselves, the less there is for everyone else, translating to less fulfillment

5. Command your Leadership Postures

• Postures are the connection between Body and Mind that influence our moods. We are constantly using Postures without realizing it and they are affecting our emotions, our focus, and the type of influence we have over others.

• Controlling your primary postures: Warrior, Child, Lover, and Emperor, will allow you to command the suitable energy to affect others on an emotional level with greater effectiveness.

• Identifying postures on others will give you greater power to influence and inspire the best in them.

6. Map your world

• Each workplace has defined areas that create your “Work Process” these could be for example: Meetings, Working Alone, Working in Teams, Directing others or being Directed, Social Elements of Work

• By defining our motivations, frustrations, processes, and the importance we assign to these areas, we can clearly define our expectation and determine, by comparison to others, if they are realistic.

• When our “World of Work” is mapped, it becomes easier to navigate through the emotional turbulence of leadership to smoother sailing and greater effectiveness as an inspiring leader who is prepared for anything.

7. Align your Leadership Values to the Environment you would Create

• As an individual, you have specific values, these values are reflected in your leadership.

• Do you know what these values are? Are there any differences between your personal values and your leadership values?

• As a leader, your success will come from cultivating an environment conducive to your vision, and to inspire that environment to enthusiastically participate in that vision. To achieve this, your values as a leader MUST reflect the values of that the environment that will create the vision.

• The values aligned with the vision alone is NOT enough; identify what the diverse people in your organisation need to “FEEL” for inspiration to take place?

• What values do you need to change to make those feelings happen?

8. Cultivate your Leadership Identity

• Leaders are the greatest influence to an organization corporate culture. Leaders may not be aware of the psychology of why their “Leadership Identity” may often be an obstacle to an inspired and effective organization.

• The realizations and awareness gained through the first 7 Assents will influence decisions that affect culture. They are the essence that determines our ability to consciously decide and “Act” intelligently instead of “React” to our environment. A leader must act and create.

• To cultivate YOUR Leadership Identity. Reflect of the first 7 Assents and write a definition of Who You Need to Be as a Leader! Then live by this Leadership Identity and ascend to the level of Transformation

When a leader has mastered the 8 Assents, he can shape the structure of his/her leadership to cultivate a effective and fulfilled work environment. The next step in transforming the group’s or organisation’s culture is the development of the 5 Pillars of Transformation for his/her teams.

These are revealed in Part III of this article.