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10 Competencies for Senior Leaders: How do you score?

Developed over the years, here is one attempt to create a clear view of what is probably in reality something like about 50 - 100 individual competencies, or specific behaviors of great leaders.

The core of this was originally 7 competencies described by Hooper and Potter in "The Business of Leadership" (1997).

10 Competencies of Outstanding Senior Leaders

Observations of successful leaders suggest that there are a number of common characteristics. While there are many definitions and competing descriptions the following set seems to include most approaches.

Give yourself a mark out of 10 for each of the following:

  1. Setting a clear direction by having a vision of the future, a strategy for bringing that vision into reality and a set of values of what is important in terms of how you run the business.

  2. Managing to ‘fire up’, inspire and motivate your whole team so that everybody is committed to the business and working together in terms of making the business successful.

  3. The customer experience champion, knowing and understanding the customers’ environment and business, questioning, listening and actively seeking the voice of the customer.

  4. Being a role model, setting an example in terms of how you personally operate on a daily basis in respect of time management, focus on priorities, cope with pressure and deal effectively with transforming problems into solutions.

  5. Creating a plan for each person in the business in terms of developing the knowledge, skills, attitudes and competencies they need to possess in order to work effectively both now and in the future, stretching and challenging them and coaching their development.

  6. Giving constructive real time feedback and recognition/praise on a daily basis, deciding quickly and acting fast on the tough people calls.

  7. Communicating and influencing effectively with both staff and when networking with customers. For example, how often do you brief everybody in your team about what is happening? How often to you explore opportunities with customers?

  8. Actively pursuing a continuous performance improvement program to identify better ways of doing things, and then following through with the changes.

  9. Enabling innovation and creativity, leading big bets, driving the transformation of the business model, making the future happen.

  10. Coping with and leading in a crisis. For example, do you try to solve everything yourself, or do you empower and delegate the problems where possible?

TOTAL SCORE out of 100?

How do you honestly score and where can you prioritize the development of your own leadership capability.

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