“Understanding oneself is the key in becoming a leader and Emergenetics is the foundation of that discovery process. With Emergenetics, you gain the knowledge of how you think and behave and how you approach work, and that becomes a bridge to understanding others and ultimately to becoming a stronger leader.”- Kelvin Redd, Director, Center for Servant Leadership

Can Do Will Do?

Being a huge Liverpool Football Club (LFC) fan and an avid reader of Inc., it was a happy coincidence when I came across a recent article which I read with great interest – The Leadership That Turned Around the U.K’s Underdog Soccer Team

The article’s first two sentences resonated deeply with me – “A whole host of factors contribute to sustained high performance, but confidence is perhaps the most underrated among them. Confidence can overcome many setbacks.”

For those of you who are not sports fans, don’t worry, I’m not going to talk about the amazing LFC (Go Reds!), but the lessons I gained from that wonderful article.

The truth is, for any team or organization to achieve peak performance, you probably need a careful combination of both the Will-Dos (factors that determine motivation) and the Can-Dos (factors that determine ability). Unfortunately, in most cases, the importance placed on talent, intelligence, skills and ability (Can-Dos) far outweigh the emphasis on motivation, engagement, and trust building (Will-Dos), which are factors that contribute to “confidence”

Building the confidence of people and teams takes time. At Emergenetics, we recommend a WEapproach – a cognitively diverse approach – which is what Dr. Browning’s recent Inc. article seems to suggest

Starting with a conceptual approach, leaders should articulate a compelling vision which unites team members and brings clarity to where everyone is headed.

Next, with an analytical approach, leaders should understand their own purpose and scope – this allows proper delegation, resulting in ownership across ranks, and a clear understanding of what needs to be done over time. At times, this might involve planning for and managing a change process.

Throughout, leaders should adopt a relational approach in order to know team members well, not just professionally, but where possible and appropriate, personally as well. This facilitates the breaking down of barriers, not just between leaders and team members, but also across teams.

Finally, with each of the above approaches, there needs to be a structured approach, which often means clear steps or an action plan. Nothing builds trust and confidence like seeing concrete steps being taken and progress being made towards achieving the vision.