Why Clarity Matters in Leading Healthy Teams
Clarity plays a key role in an organization’s success. Without it, employees can’t effectively carry out a company’s mission—they may attempt to accomplish the goals that are placed upon them, but without a clear direction of where they’re going, they get lost.
As leaders, it's our job to provide a clear understanding of our goals, vision, purpose and mission to those who follow us. For both the team and for each individual, leaders must establish clarity by defining attainable goals, communicating distinct expectations and drawing a clear map to the destination.
This month, Leadercast shines a light on clarity in leadership in a Q&A with our President Angela Raub. Below, she shares her thoughts and experiences with clarity and why it matters in leading healthy teams.
What does clarity mean to you as a leader?
Clarity should be a daily state of being for every team member in an organization. No matter how far someone may be from the top of the company, everyone should know where they are headed in their daily individual roles, and as a team. Even if an organization is in transformation, the team must understand the current state of affairs. There may be fluid goals and objectives, but everyone is made to understand the direction for the team and the way that they will all achieve success together.
Transparency in leadership directly correlates to the clarity of the mission and the vision for the team. Leaders must provide a defined path with frequent updates and status checks to allow the team to understand the company’s current location and how they may successfully participate on both an individual and team perspective. One of my favorite quotes by Steve Maraboli exemplifies the importance for clarity across a company: “A lack of clarity could put the brakes on any journey to success.”
What are the biggest lessons you’ve learned throughout your career about clarity in leadership?
I have worked for two types of leaders: One that provided such incredible clarity that there were never any surprises. In the depths of the second worst economic crisis, I worked for a CEO who described the economy as being like the face of the clock. Every week, the CEO would describe where we were as a company and where the world’s economy was moving. Our strategy for negotiating current management contracts and future portfolio expansion relied on our team not only understanding our state, but the world’s state of business. I learned more from this leader and I aspire to lead like he did.
The second leader was one who never provided clarity. The leadership team was never allowed to meet together. We were manipulated and were never provided the opportunity to understand the full state of affairs. Then one day, we were told the organization was being dissolved. It felt horrible to function in blurred vision on a daily basis. I was unable to leverage my skill set that would have likely helped the organization thrive. The leadership team felt minimized and disrespected.
A great leader provides each department and team member with a pair of glasses that gives them clarity of direction. With clarity, both leaders and their team members can move in a direction with absolute certainty and confidence that they’re working together toward a common goal.
Why does clarity matter in being a leader worth following?
Clarity is a leadership must. An authentic and transparent leader will always take a team in a positive direction toward their goals. I feel very strongly that transparency, trust and clarity all go hand-in-hand. Without transparency, no one will ever truly believe you. Without trust there is no way to navigate effectively as an individual nor grow as a team. Regardless of your title, transparency is the only foundation to build successful businesses. A clear vision and strategy, coupled with a purely motivated and authentic leader, is a starting point for a thriving and healthy culture.
It's 2019! What are your goals for Leadercast over the next 12 months, and how will these goals help our readers on their journeys to be better leaders?
There are several goals that are important for Leadercast in 2019. The most important is for our team to lead with a servant’s heart. More than 18 years ago, our owners were dealt a vision for an organization that would change the world through positive servant leadership. I feel strongly that that was laid on their hearts with purity and an intent to truly change the world.
The Leadercast team is honored to have the huge responsibility of filling the world with leaders worth following. In 2019, it is our team’s desire to delight our clients and engage them with excellent customer service and best-in-class leadership content across our events and through all of our products year-round. We are nothing if we do not lead by example and provide our clients with incredible speaker casts and weekly actionable leadership content. If we do not serve our existing client base with excellence, we will be unable to grow in a healthy sustainable fashion.
The world screams for inspiring and meaty leadership content in a time when people do not know where to turn for trustworthy advice. I am quite confident that Leadercast is ready for the challenges of 2019. We will grow together as team, grow in serving our clients and simultaneously grow our footprint around the globe as we work to fulfill our mission to fill the world with leaders worth following.
What excites you about our Leadercast Live theme, Leading Healthy Teams?
Oh gosh. All of it. This is my passion in life. To build and nurture a work environment that makes people better partners, spouses, parents, siblings and world-changers is inspiring for me as a leader. People spend more waking hours at work than with their families. What if work environments made people leave better—better in all areas of their lives because of the work they do day in and day out? Leaders have such an honor and privilege to change the world by creating places that make people better.
What role will clarity play for the Leadercast team in 2019?
Clarity will be instrumental in Leadercast’s success this year. We must be clear with our strategic plan and measuring our goals on a daily basis. If we cannot measure our activities, we should not be doing them. If we desire to change the world through positive leadership, we must function on a foundation steeped in reliable and measurable business practices.
*Want to learn more about the world’s largest one-day leadership event? Click here to find details and to register to attend Leadercast Live 2019.