I am used to translating from Portuguese to English and vice-versa, but I usually write the articles in Portuguese first. So, as I start putting this one together in English, I am intrigued with the experience.
It’s not easy to be a leader in our demanding world today. We face all kinds of challenges all over the planet. In my home country, Brazil, a multi-layer crisis stroke hard.
Although there is no “right” or “wrong” way to be a leader, there are best practices and ideas that can help our days flow better while adapting to constant changes.
Based on my leadership and coaching experience, I have chosen 3 essential insights from Forbes on the biggest and most influential leadership and management trends of 2018.
I will also share the results of the most important qualities of a leader according to an activity at an alumni group I am a member of.
1. Find and Promote Work-Life Balance
The pressure for results and the need to keep a job or a business can sometimes make us forget we are human beings. We have basic needs to survive such as food, rest, sleep, family life, connection, exercise. When we reach our limits, we can lower our performance.Before a leader can allow the team to have a work-life balance, it’s important that the leader herself or himself experiences this blend.
For example, the most important IT companies have recognized that working from home helps acquire and retain top talents. But more than that, companies need to allow staff to better blend their work and lives to reduce burnout and increase results.
After more than a year living in the UK, the good news is that having worked in Brazil for American companies and working as a consultant and coach, I have observed that Europeans are ahead of us in terms of work-life balance. We can definitely learn from them.
How do you keep work and life balance?
2. Do as I say, because I do what I say
In the past and unfortunately still today, leaders may have supported procedures and policies without necessarily following them. The future is today and inappropriate behavior lowers results and have no longer space. Accountability is key for both team and leader.
Easier said than done, leaders need to lead by actions and examples. As a leader and a coach I have realized we need help to actually face and sometimes change our habits. I am continuously coached, mentored and supervised by wonderful colleagues who continuously help me improve my performance. So, I recommend that people consider this possibility. You can be surprised to actually see yourself in the mirror. On the other hand, this consciousness will also set you free to create new practices and feel more comfortable in your position.
How do you avoid the “do as I say, not what I do” syndrome?
3. Continue developing yourself and allow your team to do so
If you want to follow the path of work-life balance as well as lead by example, you bet you need to be better, more efficient and have higher performance day after day. In a fast pace environment, this is only possible with continuous education.
Everything changes all the time. I have a background in marketing for IT and I am also a marketing consultant. It’s amazing how every quarter there is new technology – and this is wonderful. However, we have to keep updated with the changes in the business world. Fast development also allows competition to move faster and companies need to gain and sustain competitive advantage to thrive.
Acquiring knowledge and developing skills allows the alignment and high performance of people, processes and technology. As Steven Maranville states: “Learning will not be confined to formal training performed within the business. Learning will extend to a growing number of online micro-learning platforms.”
Leaderships qualities that matter most today
In the spirit of continuous learning, I attended a 3-day Thinking Partnership Course with Jane Adshead-Grant. The Time to Think methodology created by Nancy Kline is so relevant to my practice that I have also joined Jane’s Thinking Environment Alumni group. At our first meeting this year, this was the question she asked us: “What do you think matters most in business and in leadership today?” In a round, followed by a rich open discussion the following thoughts and ideas were revealed.
Respect for the individual and seeing beyond our assumptions.
Integrity, being honest and open, following through on what you say you will do.
Self-confidence, knowing who you are and from that empowering others to step into their best self.
Authenticity, being your true self and being willing to be vulnerable.
Fairness, treating people fairly and providing opportunities for all.
Self-compassion and humility.
Inclusion and listening.
Courage and personal accountability.
I hope these ideas help you prepare to develop your own effective leadership style of motivating and guiding people. Hopefully this will allow you to adapt to your team during each new challenge in a successful way.
You know what, it was easier to write in English… Perhaps because it’s a more straight forward language than Portuguese, or maybe it’s easier because it’s not my mother tongue I don’t keep going in circles.
Denise Barbezani is Associate Certified Coach - ACC/ICF at the International Coach Federation. And certified in executive and personal coaching at ICI - Integrated Coaching Institute. She holds an MBA in marketing by one of the most important marketing institutions in Brazil, ESPM. She has 10 years of experience in multinational technology companies. Fluent in English, she holds a Proficiency Certificate from Cambridge University - CPE and a Bachelor of Arts in Portuguese and English as well as a translation degree from Universidade Anhembi Morumbi. She strengthened her entrepreneurship skills at Empretec Training, a UN methodology. Denise has already provided more than 500 hours of coaching and offers her services to more than 50 clients in Brazil and in the world through online sessions. As a coach, she helps people define and achieve their professional, life, and business goals. Today she lives near London, UK, with her family.