Leadership Strategy and Why Your Organisation Needs One

Leadership Strategy and Why Your Organisation Needs One

Great leaders know that planning is an indispensable process that can improve their organisation’s growth and sustainability. This is why many companies devote so much time and resources to developing plans for every major component of their business.

Your business plans shouldn’t end with corporate budgets, sales projections, hiring policies and marketing practices. According to research conducted by Development Dimensions International (DDI) and reported in their Global Leadership Forecast 2014|2015 over 14,000 business leaders and HR professionals were surveyed and fewer than 15% reported that there companies have a “strong bench” of candidates to fill leadership roles in their organisation.

The same research found that the number one challenge facing leaders today is learning how to attract, recruit, develop and retain top people as well as inspiring them to become and remain engaged in the workplace. To overcome this obstacle, the study found that a greater focus is needed to develop and “improve leadership development programs, enhance the effectiveness of senior management teams, improve the effectiveness of frontline supervisors and managers, and improve succession planning.”

Based on these statistics, it’s readily apparent that developing an effective leadership strategy is just as critical to your company’s performance and long term success as any other business plan!

Building Your Leadership Pipeline

At some point, the current leaders of your company will leave. While some will retire, others will move on to new opportunities so you must take steps to plan for the succession of leaders at every level of your organisation. As a driver of change in your company, it’s imperative that you create a leadership strategy that will increase the depth and diversity of your pool of potential leaders. To be effective, your leadership strategy should include, at a bare minimum, a plan to identify individuals with leadership potential.

Today’s workforce needs leaders that can facilitate trust, co-operation, collaboration and creativity. So, when your organisation begins its search for leadership candidates, as much attention should be given to individual personality traits as is given to individual skillsets, experience and background. An emphasis should also be placed on finding candidates with high degrees of emotional and social intelligence as well as integrity and creativity.

Once candidates are identified for potential leadership roles, you can strengthen their skill development by providing additional training, and offering new assignments of increasing responsibility. As each candidate grows in their ability, your organisation can prepare them for greater leadership roles by pairing them with mentors and coaches.

Mentors and coaches are a cornerstone of any effective leadership development strategy because they are invaluable to leaders at all stages of their career. These specialists help leaders by offering practical advice and guidance that help leaders to acquire the traits and skills that they need while also challenging leaders to continue to push towards excellence in multiple areas.

In addition to providing opportunities to identify a greater number of individuals with leadership potential, an effective leadership strategy will include plans to increase the diversity of both your workforce and the individuals that lead them. Your leadership strategy should include a plan for auditing your company processes to identify and eliminate areas of gender and ethnic bias that might hold back potential leaders is imperative to increase fairness and balance in your organisation.

You can encourage leadership diversity by seeking to eliminate practices and policies that “hide” potential leaders due to the lack of visibility in specific roles, cut potential leaders out of the loop of communication channels, or that create unfair conflicts in work/life balance that might be resolved with greater flexibility in scheduling and commitments.

How deep is your organisation’s bench? Do you have all the people that you need to fill key “linchpin” roles in your company? Do your current leaders have what it takes to be effective in their current as well as future roles and move from “good enough” to great? If your answer is “no,” or “not quite,” why not get in touch today, and let us help you improve your leadership strategy?

About Sonia McDonald

Sonia McDonaldSonia McDonald, CEO and Founder of LeadershipHQ, is an Entrepreneur, Thought Leader, Dynamic Keynote Speaker, Leadership Coach and Author of Leadership Attitude (now on BOOKTOPIA!). She was recently named in the Top 250 Influential Women Leaders across the Globe. Sonia is one of Australia’s Leading Executive Coaches. She has over 25 years’ human resource management, leadership and organisational development experience. She has held senior leadership roles in organisational development, learning and development, human resources and talent management fields across the globe. She is also an inspirational and dynamic leadership and neuroscience keynote speaker.

POWER SESSION OFFER ONLY $25 Book a POWER session in with me today https://lnkd.in/gXVAXm8. I have decided to offer this at only $25 to give everyone the opportunity to see what it can do for you. I am Sonia McDonald a leader in coaching CEO’s, Entrepreneurs, Executives and Emerging Leaders – and I help make them rock! Do not miss this opportunity and join the many people who make me proud to have made a difference to their lives. Do not hesitate and book now https://lnkd.in/gXVAXm8

JOIN OUR FREE SMS LEADERSHIP TOOL! #ATTITUDE We want to create a world of Great Leaders and that is why this FREE SMS Leadership Tool has been designed for YOU. We would love your feedback on our New SMS Tool – sign up today by sending a SMS #attitude to 0429 398 095 (Australia) and we will make you ROCK as a Leader.
Remember #attitude to 0429 398 095

Connect with Sonia at:

1300 719 665 or +61 424 447 616

www.soniamcdonald.com.au

sonia@soniamcdonald.com.au

7 Top Tips for Self Leadership

7 Top Tips for Self Leadership

Leadership is an Attitude. Not a Role or Title. Self Leadership starts with YOU.

Tip No 1 – Self Awareness

We spend so much time trying to be successful or climbing the ladder; when we should spend time getting to know who we are. Our strengths, passions, dreams, triggers, faults, styles and continuously learning about ourselves. This is where we can truly be a leader and build our brand. The more aware we are of ourselves, the more aware we are of others. This awareness is the birthplace of kindness, curiosity and compassion. We discover we are only human and it builds courage.

Tip No 2 – Believe in Yourself

We spend so much time trying to be competent at something to feel confident about ourselves. I get it. Sometimes we don’t put our hand up, go for opportunities or take risks as we want to feel 110% competent at it. Be confident, say yes, take risks, go for it – confidence and self belief will take you far. It’s okay if you only tick 7 out of the 10 boxes, you can do it, you will learn and you will make mistakes . Believe in yourself.

Tip No 3 – Be Compassionate

Why are we always so hard on ourselves? I remember when I was younger, I used to put so much pressure on myself. When I made the occasional stuff (maybe not so occasionally); I would beat myself up for days around it. We are all human and yes sometimes we forget this. Give yourself a break, love yourself completely as you deserve it, always learn from your stuff ups (best learnings come from this), and remember it will pass. Thing is; when you are compassionate to yourself, you are more aware and able to be compassionate towards others. Focus on empathy, kindness and gratitude always for yourself and for others.

Tip No 4 – Get a Coach or a Mentor (or both) – and find a Sponsor

Without a doubt the one area that has had greatest impact on my life and career are my Coaches and Mentors. Some of which have been formal and some informal. Think about this – all great sports people and executives have coaches. They have mentors. The people who are your trusted advisors; the ones you go to for guidance and advice. Some of these people are now my sponsors where they advocate on my behalf to put me out there. INVALUABLE! Do not be afraid to ask someone you admire and trust to be your mentor, coach or sponsor. Do it! Go for it

Tip No 5 – Be Humble

Humility as a Leader is critical. No matter what you are doing, where you are going, what you have and don’t have, where you are, what title you have, who you are; you are not more or less important than anyone else. We are all human and we all have our own struggles. Always be humble. Always think about what might be going on for someone else. Always help others where you can. Be grateful for being who you are and what you have. Humility to get you a long way….

Tip No 6 – Lead by Example

Integrity is the centre pole of Self Leadership. It is crucial that you follow through on your promises and you display behaviour and action which is aligned to your words and values. This starts with knowing yourself, what is important to you, why you do what you do, what you stand for and your values. The Self Leadership example you espouse and demonstrate can set you up for success…and failure. The only way to lead is through integrity, honesty and by example. If you say you will do something, do it. The more you know yourself and the impact you have on others, the more you will find Self Leadership within you.

Tip No 7 – Never Stop Learning

Jack Nicholson once said “The minute you stop learning I believe you are dead.”
This is true. Never stop learning, open yourself up to feedback, read those books, watch the TED talks, attend those educational opportunities, get a coach and a mentor and open our mind, heart and soul to continuous learning, knowledge, growth and awareness. Life is always a wonderful journey of self-discovery.

About Sonia McDonald

Sonia McDonaldSonia McDonald, CEO and Founder of LeadershipHQ, is an Entrepreneur, Thought Leader, Dynamic Keynote Speaker, Leadership Coach and Author of Leadership Attitude (now on BOOKTOPIA!). She was recently named in the Top 250 Influential Women Leaders across the Globe. Sonia is one of Australia’s Leading Executive Coaches. She has over 25 years’ human resource management, leadership and organisational development experience. She has held senior leadership roles in organisational development, learning and development, human resources and talent management fields across the globe. She is also an inspirational and dynamic leadership and neuroscience keynote speaker.

POWER SESSION OFFER ONLY $25 Book a POWER session in with me today https://lnkd.in/gXVAXm8. I have decided to offer this at only $25 to give everyone the opportunity to see what it can do for you. I am Sonia McDonald a leader in coaching CEO’s, Entrepreneurs, Executives and Emerging Leaders – and I help make them rock! Do not miss this opportunity and join the many people who make me proud to have made a difference to their lives. Do not hesitate and book now https://lnkd.in/gXVAXm8

JOIN OUR FREE SMS LEADERSHIP TOOL! #ATTITUDE We want to create a world of Great Leaders and that is why this FREE SMS Leadership Tool has been designed for YOU. We would love your feedback on our New SMS Tool – sign up today by sending a SMS #attitude to 0429 398 095 (Australia) and we will make you ROCK as a Leader.
Remember #attitude to 0429 398 095

Connect with Sonia at:

1300 719 665 or +61 424 447 616

www.soniamcdonald.com.au

sonia@soniamcdonald.com.au

Top Tips for Building Your Brand Identity

Top Tips for Building Your Brand Identity

If you think you can get away without clear branding today, you need to think again. In the legal profession, it’s becoming more and more important to build a clear brand identity. Your brand is what sets you apart from others in the industry and, importantly, what connects you to your potential client.
When it’s consistent, your brand reflects your area of expertise, your “business personality” and your integrity. It makes you attractive to your market, convincing potential clients that you can give them the help they need. They can trust you to deliver.
How do you build your brand identity? These tips will help you.

1. Define what you do.
You know your area of expertise, but how would you express it in terms the average person would understand?

2. Define your ideal client.
Who is likely to need your services? What do you know about them? What might they be asking you? What help will they need? Where will you find them? More importantly, where will they be looking for you?

3. Define your point of difference.
What makes you or your firm different to any other? If someone was to refer a friend to you, what would be their ‘selling point’? For example, your approachability or your knack of putting legal jargon into plain English. Perhaps your point of difference is in your area of speciality or the sector of the market you deal with.

4. Apply this to your marketing.
Branding isn’t just colours and logos. It’s the message you weave through every piece of communication you create. If you’ve answered the first three questions, it will be easier to create an ad or a promotion that speaks to the right client in the language they will understand.

5. Get online.
Build a website, develop your LinkedIn Profile, rewrite your bio or start creating articles that reflect who you are and your area of speciality. Make sure the messaging is consistent across every channel you use. It’s the consistency of the message that will become the cornerstone of your reputation.

6. Consider social media.
Social media usage is increasing. There are now 16,000,000 users of Facebook in Australia alone. That’s 65.8% of the total population. If social media is where people are looking for information and word of mouth recommendations, you need to be there. Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn are very popular platforms so it is worth your while to develop a profile on each site.

7. Build a portfolio of success stories
No matter how powerful your branding message, you still need to be able to back up your claims. Gather together stories of how you have helped people similar to your ideal client. If you can, ask your clients to give you testimonials or be part of case studies you can write and add to your site. It’s called social proof and it’s one of the biggest influences on your potential client’s decision making process.

8. Interact with your professional colleagues.
Building your brand means spreading your brand message to your colleagues and industry influencers. Teach them what you stand for and about the kind of work you prefer to do. These will become referral sources for future work.

9. The power of an image.
While logos are important because they can be easily identified and recognised, don’t overlook the power of the headshot. In the legal profession, trust is vital, and a good photo can say a lot to the right person. Be sure to present yourself in the way your clients expect you to look. Depending on your market, that may not mean collar and tie. The more consistent your appearance is with your message, the more believable you will be.

10. Never stop promoting your brand.
Repetition is part of building recognition and trust. The more often your clients see your branding, the more they will feel at home with it. Promote yourself and your brand identity regularly across all your marketing channels. Be memorable.

The key to successful branding is being confident in your message and expressing it in the language or format your potential clients will be comfortable with and able to understand. That’s how you will establish a solid basis for your business success.
Stand out, and shine out in the crowd with clear brand identity.

About Sonia McDonald

Sonia McDonaldNamed in the Top 250 Influential Women across the Globe, Sonia McDonald is an internationally recognised speaker, entrepreneur, leadership expert, coach and thought leader. Having over 25 years experience in human resource management and organizational development, Sonia shares her leadership wisdom and knowledge in her highly sought after book, Leadership Attitude.

Sonia believes that leadership is not simply a role or title, it is about one’s self; how you think, feel, see yourself and behave as a leader. It is ultimately an attitude! If you want some attitude in your life, Sonia can give you the guidance you need on your journey to self-discovery and to helping you ROCK IT as a leader! Head to the LeadershipHQ website where you can purchase Leadership Attitude, read more on our blog, or find out more about our coaching programs.

 

Connect with Sonia at:

Phone 1300 719 665 or +61 424 447 616

www.soniamcdonald.com.au

sonia@soniamcdonald.com.au