Thursday, 5 January 2012

Doing Leadership!

A fascinating documentary on King George V on Tuesday. No one would claim George as a great intellect. He was a terrible father and more interested in shooting animals than reading books. He was however an incredibly good Monarch. Why?

His leadership style was based on a sound common sense approach and a gut instinct in handling difficult situations. These are , in fact, key leadership attributes. I've often been struck by how important a role instinct plays in making decisions as a CEO.

I can point to a number of occasions when the logic or advice I received pointed to a particular decision but I knew it wasn't quite right. Sometimes I bowed to the advice- only to find my instinct was right. Other times I plowed ahead on my instinct and found I was right. But sometimes wrong so it's not an infallible guide to success. But then the leadership job is made up of these types of challenge.

Now this is not to suggest you ignore all advice or press ahead regardless but it is to suggest you must be bold , not cautious and trust your own judgement.

Now I'm off to see Sir Merrick Cockell, the new Chair of the Local Government Association. Councils face huge challenges but its my job to tell him he should face them with us not by cutting us! Far too often councils think we are easy prey for cuts without thinking of the damage they can do to the more vulnerable and marginalised in our communities. I suspect ACEVO is going to have to be on the front foot defending our members against bad council decisions as we go through 2012. But ACEVO is never afraid to speak out when our Chief Executives are being threatened!

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