Leadership

Leadership
“Ability is what you’re capable of doing. Motivation determines what you do. Attitude determines how well you do it.” – Lou Holtz

Leadership is not a role or a position. It’s a frame of mind, a style, a mode of operation. Leadership can be bottom-up as well as top-down from within and outside the organization.

Some say that great leaders are born leaders. I believe it’s a combination of both inherent leadership qualities and experience.

Successful leaders have clear vision and deep understanding of business clients and employees. They're able to promote new directions, lead by example and are respected by others.

Leaders must also be good listeners and effective communicators who can create a positive atmosphere and influence and inspire others to follow their example, willingly and cheerfully. Great leaders also respectfully admit their mistakes and learn from them.

I believe the success and reputation I have earned as a leader in the various roles I have held over the years comes from my ability to employ and demonstrate the above intrinsic virtues. I like to think of it as 'leadership wisdom'.

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Strategy

Strategy
“You have to be fast on your feet and adaptive or else a strategy is useless.” – Lou Gerstner

I had the opportunity to develop many business strategies and plans over the span of my career. I’ve learned that the more complex you make your strategy the more difficult it is to implement. A good strategy needs to be clear and simplified for everyone to understand, relate to and easily able to implement. If we can simplify it we can action it.

As in the military, strategy crosses the chasm between the course of actions and the plans. Simply put, strategy is perspective. It must have a clear vision and direction on how to get from “here” to “there”. The actions in between may prove to be challenging along the way and have a number of obstacles to overcome but the end state must always be clear. The best way to successfully get “there” is to clearly understand the current state and be prepared to quickly adjust and adapt to change while keeping focused on the end goal.

Strategies cannot be developed in isolation. Stakeholders from top to bottom and across the organization have to be engaged and aligned. Everyone in the company needs to know it, understand it, own it, and drive it to its destination in harmony. In other words everyone must sing to the same tune!

My approach to developing and implementing strategies always takes into account the current and desired state. Identifying who the stakeholders are, understand how we got to where we are, clearly define where we want to be and why. This is essential to building a well defined roadmap to bridge the gaps between the "as-is" and "to-be" environment.

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Communications

Communications
“Like a human being, a company has to have an internal communication mechanism, a “nervous system”, to coordinate its actions.” – Bill Gates

“Don’t tell me what I know, tell me what I don’t know.”

Communication is one of the most important factors in business and in life in general. It is at the heart of everything we do. It can make or break a project. A common mistake I’ve seen in business is that people tend to communicate based on their own understanding and communications preference and assume others will receive the message as it was intented. Everyone interprets things differently. To develop an effective communications plan it is critical to understand who the targeted audience.

Great communicators will adapt their style to suit the audience and use the proper medium for disseminating clear and concise information. Some people prefer verbal communications while others favour written communiqués. Some like more details and others prefer highlights only. What's important is to send the right message to the right people at the right time.

Staying connected is important. It keeps people engaged. Using terminologies that people can easily relate to is also important. Being consistent and keeping the communications channel open at all times is vital. As for content, less is more, as long as it provides the essentials and that the message is clear and to the point.

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Change

Change
“It is not the strongest of the species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change.” - Charles Darwin

There are different philosophies as to how to best manage and implement change. Over time I have experienced and managed multiple initiatives driven by business or technology change. I learned that one of the most important factors to success is to effectively manage the people side of change. In fact 9 out of 10 top success factors in change initiatives are people related. Another critical factor is to have top sponsorship and support for the change from start to finish.

A key principle of any successful change program is to build commitment by engaging and aligning key stakeholders and employees throughout the design, planning and implementation process. The objective is to build a logical ordered set of steps and planned interventions designed to transition the organization between old and new, with a clearly scoped and fully resourced and integrated project team.

I addressed and led organizational transformation projects with confidence and with a sense of ownership while orchestrating change through motivation and drive. This is one of my passion. I believe what mainly contributed to my success is my understanding and knowledge of change best practices, my strong leadership and coaching skills, my ease of involving and aligning stakeholders, my ability to create strong change networks, my persuasive yet broad-minded ability to engage people, my influencial communications skills, and my positive attitude.

Let's just say that change and I get along really well!

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