Often times the founder of the business (Dad or Mom or Grandpa or Grandma) have a great deal of passion for the business. They typically have made great sacrifice in the early stages of the enterprise. If you want to know more about that just ask a company founder to tell you a story about when times were tough yet they persisted.
You’ll get five stories, not one and you won’t be able to shut them up. Of course the 2nd or 3rd generation leaders roll their eyes when they hear this because they just can’t relate and see it as an exaggeration. How can the company founders succeed the business to leadership that does not seem as engaged, passionate or frugal and conservative? This is part of the intergenerational conundrum that we at FBAN work to reconcile.
There are incontrovertible tenants to leadership. Meaning regardless of the style of the leaders these tenants should be adhered to. Some of these are clearly espoused in Stephen Covey’s 7 Highly Effective Habits or Dr. John Maxell’s landmark book, The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership. These are laws governing the ability to apply things like influence, respect, connection, buy-in, celebration, vision, navigation, processes, growth, timing, etc. Then there are styles of leadership. It is critical that we do not confuse laws of leadership with leadership styles. For example leaders must be ethical and competent. This is not a matter of style. It is a base qualification for getting people to like, trust and follow us a leaders. These base levels have to do with character.
The next level which impacts both requirements of leadership but begins to morph in styles of leadership is how we deal with people and productivity. This level of leadership has more to do with the capability of the leader. This involves how leaders make decision and solve problems. How much input do they get? How important is consensus? How do they deal with conflict? How do they manage tasks? Now we begin to move into the styles of leadership.
- family leadership, family oversight, emerging family leaders, executive leadership (non-family members), middle management
Dysfunctional Behaviors in Leaders
- I’m the boss so it’s “my way or the highway”
- Asking a question regarding deliverables is insubordination
- All mistakes must result in having someone to blame
- Only leaders can create innovation
- Making decisions without getting all the facts
- Linear communication for efficiencies sake
- All conflict is dealt with by dismissing as unacceptable behavior
- Letting people struggle based on the notion that “the cream rises to the top”
- Allowing the perception of ; “This is the way the boss likes it done”
- Micromanagement by necessity
- High expectation but low recognition
How well-equipped is the next generation in navigating your business through the challenges of the coming decades? Download our FREE Generational Planning Guide.