In today's fast-paced, rapidly changing, and highly competitive world, how leaders show up is key to sustained organisational success.
Gone are the days when leaders could rely on a military style of command and control. In the modern workplace, leaders need to be intentional in how they create value for an organisation; it's customers, employees and shareholders.
In this article we will explore the concept of intentional leadership, its key principles and characeristics, and why it is essential for organisational success.
What is Intentional Leadership
As the name might suggest, intentional leadership is the act of creating value through purposeful and mindful actions.
Intentional leaders are not accidental managers or passive bystanders. They are very deliberate in what they do and why they do it!
Key Principals & Characteristics
Intentional leaders have a deep understanding of their whole self; who they are, how they feel, and how they show up. They are aware of how their behaviour impacts others and actively work on self-improvement. They are open to feedback, willing to learn from their mistakes, and continuously strive to become better leaders.
Intentional leaders have a clear purpose and a compelling vision that inspires and motivates others. They communicate this vision effectively and align the team's efforts towards a common goal. Clarity of purpose provides a sense of meaning and direction to the team, which leads to increased engagement, commitment, and productivity.
Intentional leaders are not out to win popularity contests. They are not afraid to make decisions and tackle the issues that are unpopular. They lead by example and are willing to be vulnerable as they get comfortable with being uncomfortable. They surround themselves with people who challenge them rather than pander to them. They recognise and reward people who demonstrate courage by stepping out of their comfort zones and take calculated risks.
Intentional leaders believe that capabilities and talent can be developed. They recognise that learning does not occur without a challenging stretch, and set high expectations for themselves and others to promote growth. They seek and provide regular coaching and feedback to ensure that every success, mistake or failure leads to learning and growth. They embrace growth language!
Diverse & Inclusive
Intentional leaders recognise the importance of collective intelligence. They are focused on creating a highly collaborative environment where contributions are recognised and celebrated, and where everyone feels heard, involved and respected. This positive and inclusive culture leads to higher employee satisfaction, increased retention, creativity and innovation.
Intentional leaders care... They care about the organisation as a whole; it's customers, employees and shareholders.
They believe that leadership is about how you make others feel, and focus on making people feel appreciated, valued, safe, confident and empowered.