Letting the Lead out of the Pencil

Like an unsharpened lead inside a pencil is not output ready, a new leader left to blend in on his own won’t serve any purpose either. Leaders are not like a commodity that you can buy off the shelf. Hiring a leader is the classic trap Human Resources often commit to.

You can never hire a “readymade leader”; instead you can very well aim to hire someone who exhibits the potential of becoming a leader in your organization. I have seen many good leaders succumb to the pressures of a new environment. They were the same meritorious ones who scaled the peak in one company but exhibited no promise or dropped the baton when they got similar responsibilities elsewhere.

So what went wrong?

Well, I believe you’ve got to sharpen the leader and bring him in line with your business vision. Gone are the days of armchair generals who rarely skipped levels and mingled with their staff due to a hypocritical veil of superiority over them. Today, you’ve got to love your people, respect them, and get them to do things by leading from example. Each organization has a unique taste to it. A leader has to be fed that taste and closely monitored by his immediate superior especially during the transition phase.

Orientation holds the key! No matter what experience anyone brings to the table, the initial tenure should chart course under some supervision. Be it the socialization process in the organization or the subsequent training catering to that specific job position. To bring out the Leadership in People, you have got to let the Lead come out of the Pencil.

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