The Dearth of Leadership

Leadership lessons from Brexit?

It has taken me a full week to even begin to gather thoughts about the outcome of the European referendum that can be articulated in a business blog.  At the end of a tumultuous week I am, with many others in business, still processing what this means for us and what lies ahead.  The chaos engulfing us right now as I write this, doesn’t feel as if it will resolve itself any time soon and I am concerned as to how this will affect companies like ours.  Business hates uncertainty and in my lifetime I have never experienced such a deep unease as events appeared to spiral out of control this week.

Most worrying of all is the dearth of Leadership at the very top of our political system.

So what can be learned about leadership and leading change from Brexit?

Well here are 5 points I’ve considered:

  1. Never, ever get caught without a plan.  I find it unconscionable that a question was put to us, the electorate, without one.  You would rightly be thrown out of any boardroom in any business for being so utterly, utterly stupid…
  2. Never think about negotiating with your pants down, it’s not a good look … or indeed talk about negotiating after you have insulted the people you are negotiating with.  Our current negotiating position is risible and you would be laughed at in business.
  3. Never advocate change unless you truly believe it will lead to the greater good and never, ever advocate change just because it benefits you personally or politically.
  4. Never ignore the people who are most affected by the change.  If  only 36% of young voters turned out, that’s not THEIR fault, it’s YOUR fault politicians and media people!  I need only point to Scotland’s Independence Referendum: the voting age was lowered, young people took part in televised debate and 80% of them turned out to vote.  So always, always make sure you communicate change, listen to people’s concerns and explain how THEY will be affected by change.
  5. Never allow yourself to join the “Post Truth” movement.  I heard this phrase on a BBC Radio 4 debate about Brexit and it disturbed me.  Apparently: “If you repeat something often enough, even if it isn’t true, people start to believe it”.  Well that might win you the battle but it won’t win you the war and I think as leader you’ll be held accountable for that untruth and, ultimately, held in contempt.  Always speak the truth and never be afraid to ask the difficult questions in your organisation that we so failed to ask our politicians.

I’m hoping these points, which seem to have evaded our political representatives, are blindingly obvious to those of you in leadership and management positions in businesses and organisations large and small.

We all have a huge task now and whichever side of the debate you were on, I know that like me, you will want a new and better country to emerge.  One that understands true leadership rather than the cult of “the leader”, one that thinks before it acts and one that puts truth and decency above all else.

JD

 

No Guru provide a range of training to develop leaders, managers, people and teams.  John is also available to deliver seminars and talks on themes covered in the blogs.  Get in touch, we would love to hear from you.

Posted by John Drysdale
1st July 2016
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Direct Claim status for No Guru ILM Coaching Courses

We are delighted to announce that following a recent virtual visit by ILM we have been awarded Direct Claim Status for our Level 3, 5 and 7 Coaching Programmes.

This means that we can claim certificates for our learners without requiring further verification (more…)

Stay Connected, Keep Learning

With the current Corona Virus crisis I wanted to be able to reach out to my clients and our target audiences, to offer them something which helps them stay connected with others and secondly helps to sharpen the skills during this difficult period.

Many of you will be working from home for an extended period and for many of you this is a new experience.  So it’s really important that we use this time and immerse ourselves in some development time as well as focusing on key projects and those important but non urgent things that often get pushed to one side in the busy organisation. (more…)

Can I Coach the Team?

20 Questions to enhance Teams

‘Can you do something with my team?’

‘What seems to be the problem?’

‘Well morale is really terrible, nobody seems to care about working here and we have lots of conflict’

‘So can I ask, what have you done to them?’

A not untypical conversation whenever I get asked to facilitate a Team Day, sometimes called an ‘away day’ or ‘teambuilding’ event.  Whilst I may be a bit harsh on the leader in this scenario, I do think that this kind of ‘state’ within the team is not a natural one. Something must have happened (or not happened), to create it. (more…)

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Why be a coach or mentor?

… your business community needs you

I am a little biased but I love both coaching and mentoring. I used to enjoy being the ‘trainer’ which satisfied the performer in me but as I get older there is something that I find deeply satisfying in being a coach or mentor.

More than that, I find it a privilege to work with people.  People that trust you enough to share their greatest challenges, dearest hopes, deepest fears and core beliefs about life. I can think of few professions in business that afford you such intimacy. I feel lucky and grateful each and every session I get to spend with my clients.

We provide opportunities for people to learn how to coach/mentor others through our ILM Programmes and I am always struck by the qualities of the people who go on that journey with us. I believe the topic of ‘coaching and mentoring’ attracts people who genuinely want to do good things; to help others and to make a difference. Over the years our learners have told stories of how their coaching/mentoring has made a real difference to the lives of others through:

  • Supporting people starting new businesses and ventures
  • Enabling Leaders to make difficult decisions
  • Helping people address deeply set and unhelpful beliefs about themselves
  • Changing people’s perspectives of situations in life and work
  • Addressing huge challenges and opportunities head on
  • Understanding and dealing with emotions
  • Listening to them (do not underestimate the power of giving someone a good listening to!)
  • Exploring options and possibilities in life and work
  • Creating a vision for themselves or their business
  • Identifying their ‘why?’ and what’s important to them

I really enjoy hearing their success stories and seeing their excitement in creating some form of breakthrough that has made a profound difference to someone. It is wonderful to see, hear and feel… And people need these sort of breakthroughs right now. With the pandemic and the uncertain economic and social outlook, people need your help.

So, what do you have to offer?  Can you be a coach or mentor? How could you make a difference?

Try answering the following questions:

  1. Why do you do what you do and what is your core purpose?
  2. What would be important to you in coaching or mentoring another individual?
  3. What sort of people would be in your ‘Target Audience’ i.e. Who would you really like to work with? Who could you most bring value to?
  4. What life/work/business skills and knowledge do you have and how could this best be shared?

These are key questions and you may need time to process them. But these are the kinds of questions we pose to our trainee coaches and mentors on our ILM Programmes. The course itself helps you to develop the skills and attributes to be an effective coach/mentor. And we show you best practice so that you too achieve the sort of breakthroughs described above.

I’m guessing if you are reading this that you have an interest in coaching or mentoring and perhaps asking the question, ‘Is it something I can do?’.  We have programmes starting in January 2021 and I would be delighted to talk to any aspiring coaches or mentors who want to take that next step but are perhaps a little unsure if they are ready.

The old army recruitment poster boldly stated, ‘Your country needs you’. I know there are many, many people in your network, workplace or business community right now; who are stuck, in need of inspiration, lacking motivation, facing dilemmas and unsure which way to turn. You could very well be the person who can make a profound change to all of that. If you are up for it, your business community needs you right now.

Are you the future professional coach or mentor?

John Drysdale

Tel: 07810 550746

john.drysdale@noguru.net

MD No Guru ltd

Our 2021 Programme starts Online on January 8th 2020. Get in touch to find out how you can join the class of 2021.

 

Speaking Truth to Power

For those afraid of speaking …

(But) TED is a tough, pressured, hugely stressful gig, even for experienced public speakers, and I’m not that. Standing in the wings waiting to go on, I told the stage manager that my heart was racing uncontrollably and in an act of great kindness, she grasped both my hands and made me take breath after breath. And what you don’t see in the video – deftly edited out – is the awful, heart-stopping moment when I forgot a line, followed by another act of collective kindness, a spontaneous empathic cheer as I composed myself and found my cue. “That’s when the audience came onside,” an attendee told me. “You were human. That’s when you won them over.”  Guardian April 2019

 

This from Carole Cadwalladr, a journalist at the Guardian who has in this last year investigated the role of tech corporations and their platforms in influencing the workings of our democracy.  What makes her TED talk so compelling is because here she is facing those very same technology giants on their turf.  And speaking truth to power.

(more…)

Coaching: Deep Impact

This week I had the chance to attend a seminar at the Leeds Coaching Network featuring renowned coach, writer and speaker Julie Starr.  You may be familiar with some of Julie’s work including; ‘The Coaching Manual’, ‘The Mentoring Manual’ and ‘Brilliant Coaching’ and the session was everything you expected it to be. (more…)