CAD Leadership - Part 4 - A Leaders Personal Assets
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There are several attributes of
leadership that have been evident in great leaders over the
years. I have picked these up over the years from many
books that I have read and from watching those I consider to be good
leaders. This is not an exhaustive list, but a good
start. We could work on these for a life time.
- Focus – dedication,
commitment, passion. Call it what you will, Leaders
keep the goal in mind. The long range goal. You
need to have an overarching plan for your CAD environment.
Think beyond the tyranny of today's problems. Think
about where you want to be in one, two or five years down
the road. Keep an up to date Technology plan on hand,
so if someone asks you what the next step should be with
CAD, you will know.
- Insight – Leaders
see through the cloudy waters to get to the root of the
problem. They see over the top of the next hill.
You need to think deeply about the impact of CAD on your
company. How it fits in to the business goals.
How it can align with the business processes. Don't
make "off the cuff" modifications without thinking through how
the change may help and hurt your users or the firms
- Charisma – people
want to be around leaders. They are not caustic or
abusive in nature. They compliment others, not demean
them. Leaders make people feel good about themselves.
- Talent – Leaders
have some natural skills that they capitalize on. You
must obviously have technical skills, I am not talking about
those. I am speaking of talents like team building,
project management, budgeting, etc. Things outside of
CAD use, but things that are required for management.
- Ability – Leaders
make things happen and get things done. You need to be
a "completer". Pushing toward the finish line.
Keep making progress even when things get tough. Never
- Communication Skills
– Leaders can share the vision and goals in clear and
understandable ways. Break it down into small
palatable chunks. These will differ based on the
audience. Management needs information it can
understand, not techno jargon. Users need small
understandable steps to learn. Clients need direct,
honest communication about CAD.
- Character – A scout
is trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind,
obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean and reverent – I
still remember these things. Leaders have character.
Character can be developed. Look inside yourself and
see where you shine and what you need to work on. Pay
attention to what others say about you. Listen to
what is being said behind the gentle "ribbing" at
your expense that makes
the group laugh. Is there some area of your character
that could use some polish? Start working on it.
If you start watching those
around you that are leaders, you may recognize some of these
traits in them. Start looking, you will see it. And
remember, others are looking at you.
Mark W. Kiker