Yesterday I had fun spending gift vouchers - plus a lot extra - at Exclusive Books. My purchases included The Definitive Drucker by Elizabeth Haas Edersheim. I found the comments in the introduction (pg 12, 13-15) relating to leadership useful.
Edersheim quotes Peter Drucker as saying, "The most important thing anybody in a leadership position can do is ask what needs to be done. And make sure that what needs to be done is understood [emphasis mine]."
Drucker goes on to comment on why so many people in leadership fail, and makes two comments in this regard:
1) They go by what they want, rather than what needs to be done;
2) The enormous amount of time and effort to make oneself understood - to communicate.
In replying to a question by Edersheim as to how leaders can be certain they know what needs to be done, Drucker emphasised two things: asking and listening [emphasis mine]. And in this regard he is also quoted as saying, "... the right questions don't change as often as the answers do."
Further, and personally I think this is a key function of leadership, Drucker emphasises that we all must step up to the responsibility to manage our way to an optimal tomorrow as "... we are all charged with influencing and managing the changes that will define our future."
12 April 2007