Berger Leadership Blog

Nov 20, 2015

Finding your own routine


I’m an avid reader and have consumed my fair share of leadership books. But even applying all the various techniques and tips described in each and every book won’t necessarily make me a great leader.

I’ve learned – and Harvard Business Review contributor Todd Warner has covered this subject – that to be a great leader I must know my organization, my staff, myself and the daily routines that help me succeed.

Warner offers some simple steps a leader can take to become a better leader. They include:

- Self-assess. “Where do you spend your time, what do you focus on? These habits define your effectiveness as a leader,” he writes. In honestly assessing your routines and habits, you are taking an important step toward improvement as a leader.

- Study high-performers. “Leadership is an applied craft,” Warner writes. He recommends not only studying high performers, but shadowing them as well and learning from their routines.

- Create a conversation about routines. He suggests talking with others about daily applications and ways to improve rather than scoring well on an assessment or once-a-year evaluation.

- Tolerate imperfection and get feedback, regularly. There is no one way to become a great leader. Warner suggests picking one or two effective routines that will make a difference in your work situation; focus on those, and seek feedback from others.

Focusing on effective routines that suit you and your workplace, Warner says, will do more for you as a leader than any list of leadership characteristics. In other words, find the routines that work for you, and you will truly grow your own performance.