Thursday, August 25, 2011

Steve Jobs as Leader

All organizations are really about people: the people who work there, their idiosyncrasies, their relationships, what they contribute, how they work or don't work well together and so on. Of course, it is all guided from the top. The person/people at the top set that entire environment.

So, Steve Jobs created that environment of a very tight leadership structure with a distinctive culture (the relationships). If he did it well and imparted his approach to those around him, it will continue. If not, it will last for a while and then fade.

In this case, the true test of whether Steve Jobs was a great leader and not just a genius at creating and developing great products will be told in the future. He has already cemented his genius in design. His genius in leadership will be defined in whether Apple can continue as successfully in the future.

In a sense, leadership is practicd in the now but defined in the future.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The Perfect Job Description

If you could create your ideal job description, what would it be like?

What would you be doing? What type of work? What kind of people would you require to be part of your work? What would be the limitations and boundaries on your job? What kind of supervision would demand? What kind of leadership would you work under? What would your environment look like? Where would it be? It’s your job. You decide how you want to structure it.

Notice that I did not mention money? I think that the job and what you get paid for it are often not really connected. Besides, that’s not what makes a job enjoyable.

Now, that you’ve written it, it’s time to start creating that job. What would you need to do to create that job? What will it take? How long would it take?

Why would you want to do this exercise? We spend so much time working that it really should be something that is enjoyable. It should be work that is meaningful to you. If it isn’t, why would you continue to tolerate working there unless you have some plan to get to the ideal job.

Our work should be part of our purpose. Without purpose, we cannot be effective leaders.