VIEWPOINT: Just occasionally leaders need to make a grand gesture to get their message across, Rudi Plettinx, Managing Director of Management Centre Europe, offers valuable insight on when and how to do it, in this eighth in his series of articles for IEDP:Newly appointed leaders often have a shrinking window of opportunity to get the team they’ve been given to manage on their side. My view is that you need to get their attention from day one, the first hour if at all possible. I think it is vitally important to send a message that will make the organization know you are serious about getting things done.
This is particularly true if you are being parachuted into a situation where there is low morale, high turnover or some similar corporate malaise.
But getting people to sit up and pay attention sometimes calls for a grand gesture. Something truly memorable. The stuff of leadership legend that will be talked about whenever the business ‘war stories’ are recalled and retold.
Just in case you need to make a grand leadership gesture one of these days, here are three real-life examples that might just get you thinking the next time you feel you need to make some instant impact:
For leaders, grand gestures have their place. Only you can’t do them too often. So my advice is save them for when you really need to strike a chord, sending a message that won’t, ever, be forgotten. You’ll also have fun doing it too. Whoever said that leadership shouldn’t be fun? Not me.
Do you have a story about a CEO, or senior manager who made the grand gesture to get a point across ? If so we’d like to hear it.
This column on leadership and organizational development is written exclusively for the IEDP by Rudi Plettinx, Managing Director of Management Centre Europe, the Brussels-based development organization. Have a comment or a question? Connect with him via Linkedin.