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How Do I Know My Leadership Brand Is Working?

My best clients measure everything. They work with spread sheets. They put together graphs to show their team. They are obsessed with how they are doing, where they are going and how they will know it.

One of my clients is exceptional at it. Admittedly, this is one of his strengths. He loves data and all things Excel. So asking him to formulate metrics that would reflect progress was inspiring and fun for him.

Often times, we ask our clients: “So how will you know you’ve succeeded?” We may get back answers like “I’ll be treated differently.” Or “I’ll just know.” Maybe. Maybe not. We encourage clients to find other ways to discover whether their leadership brand is working.

Here are some ideas to measure leadership effectiveness: 1. 360 Feedback Assessments on Leadership Effectiveness – these are easy ways to get a sense of how your brand is being received by all those stakeholders you work with. Certain leadership competencies are measured, both by you and your stakeholders. We pay attention to the gaps between the measurements for information.

2. Create realistic, but thrilling, measurable goals. What is possible but perhaps slightly scary? This is place of growth! Not so far out that you are paralyzed, but not too close that it’s too easy and doesn’t tap into your brilliance. Keep track of your achievements per month over a larger period of time. Create a spreadsheet or put it on a table. Find what works for you. Just write it all down.

3. Close the gaps by getting a handle on what’s driving you. THIS IS THE MOST IMPORTANT WORK YOU WILL DO. Action steps to increase communication skills or to achieve certain results are great. But until you get a sense of the story that you operate under, no amount of “skills training” will stick for the long haul. Catch yourself in the act. Measure how many times you switch gears and operate from the story that serves you.

4. Get periodic, verbal feedback in specific focus areas. After you pick certain areas to leverage or increase, obtaining targeted feedback from your mentor or one or two stakeholders is key. Do this at least quarterly or as periodically as makes sense in your organization. This way, the organization is engaged in your progress and can see how determined you are to succeed. Measure your progress: What are your wins? Where can more specificity be helpful?

5. Retake the 360 Feedback Assessment. This can provide a direct comparison to the first one you may have taken 12 or 18 months prior. You will see overall how your leadership effectiveness has increased and specifically, in what areas over time. You will also see where the next focus area may be. The idea here is to continually be conscious of leadership behavior and effectiveness through consistent measuring.

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