Mindful Transparency Promotes Skilled Leaders

Ever consider how the process of promoting  leaders can stunt or skyrocket organizational innovation?

Until we promote leaders through mindful transparency, unskilled bosses will continue hold innovation hostage at the helm.

Mindful transparency promotes skilled leaders

Too many organizations remain locked in time warps,  while keen talents for innovative growth go ignored, and inept leaders move up the ranks without much challenge. It could also be part of the problem that Gary Hamel addresses when he stated that less than 25% of people like going to work. Or it could be why worker engagement swooped to an all time low.  Perhaps it’s behind workers viewing their jobs as downers. Leaders are warned to adapt, and mindful transparency could lead the change.

Research affirms that people make decisions based more on emotions, than on facts. While people rationalize decisions based on facts, they tend to make decisions based on feelings. That cognitive discovery affirms also then, that leaders get promoted less for innovative abilities evidenced, than on emotional proclivities of those in control.

Unfortunately,  too little innovative leadership talent gets promoted due to lack of mindful transparency. Furthermore, this disconnect between talent and promotion, holds entire organizations captive as unskilled leaders cling to ruts or demand tired and broken practices.

To promote leaders through mindful transparency could prepare entire organizations for a new world order. An era of innovation – where novelty advances more talents,  people prosper and productivity results. When business works with brainpower, rather than against it, leadership prospers. How so?

Start all leadership reviews with supportive evidence – from person being reviewed, rather than opinions made by overseers, whose feelings may limit talent growth. At the MITA International Brain Center, for instance, leaders respond to specific questions related to smart skills that show evidence of innovative leadership in action.

One question, for example asks: Do you improve outcomes through risk-talking. Person checks yes  √ or no  √. If no  √.  is checked, then that person is expected to design a plan to work on specific weakness that prevents them from taking risks for growth. If yes  √. is checked,  the leader being evaluated is expected to provide specific evidence of risks (or whatever smart skill is being evidenced) that others could affirm.

Only at this point, and after the person being reviewed has intelligence-fair opportunities  to prove strengths and identify weak areas, being worked on (with evidence provided) do others enter the review process. At that point, supervisors who are evaluating the leader can:

  • Ask for more evidence of this strong or weak specific smart skill identified
  • Disagree with review results – with supporting evidence on the other side
  • File negotiated results – or areas of final disagreement for further consideration

In brain based transparency, the review forms rely more on articulation of the person reviewed, on the rigors of evidence for good or poor scores, and less on feelings or proclivities  of reviewers.

In this way, review forms also double as growth guidelines for leaders. The transparent process promotes more leaders who continue to use strengths, and who shore up weaker areas to prosper the entire work community.

The mindful transparent process provides for more leadership reflection, and greater intrapersonal growth, as leaders become aware of their stronger and weaker smart skills. Through a brain based  alignment with smart skills, multiple intelligences, and leader accountability,  ensure innovative growth. People shift from decisions made on feelings alone, to promotions aligned with conditions for ongoing and innovative growth.

2 Comments

  1. RalfLippold says:

    … interesting to see no comment on this rather insight and scary article yet.

    What’s missing?

    My own history at BMW pretty much resembles what is written. I came to the company in order to bring up the new plant in Leipzig. My very special knowledge lies in the role of being a boundary spanner (between IT and the rest of the organization) and just recently before entering had brought up and running a tracking & tracing program for intermodel container logistics.

    The only thing that was clear was “You have to manage the processes that run in other plants with half the workforce in Leipzig”.

    My flexible mind was challenged once again (after being head of the crisis orga during the flooding in Dresden 2002). And we collectively did an awesome job :-)

    Once operation in place however the former skills were not as appreciated as in the beginning where no map of where to go existed.

    Boss positions shifted and so the visibility of my former work (and others as well).

    What now counted was more the planned action on the map we had prepared for the rest to follow.

    Interesting to see how the course of life goes. There are always first-movers, second-movers and the normals.

    To transparent in a wise way in which field each of the above plays its vital role for the good of the larger will be where organizations can enable themselves to outpace the competition. However not everything is clear right from the beginning, only the chances are widely open to grasp if managers and employees alike dare to see and feel into the future :-)

  2. eweber says:

    Thanks Ralf – what a remarkable reminder to stay smart, stay flexible and stay collaborative. You did it so well to expect the changes needed to keep up each time the ground shifted and new directions were needed.

    No wonder it worked well, and others were lucky to have you at the helm!

    What was the most significant lesson learned through that guidance of others through the shifting gears? What might you di differently on onother similar occasion? Ellen

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