In this morning's, Tuesday January 18, Times, William Hague, while talking about the Prime Minister, gives a brilliant description of leadership.
This is what he says, which I have split up a bit, but not changed the words:
The main job of the leader of any organisation, alongside choosing the right people for key roles and setting the strategy, is to create the appropriate culture.
· If they are punctual, everybody else runs on time.
· If they study their briefing, all the others have no option but to do likewise or be caught out.
· If they insist on the highest standards of behaviour, the importance of doing so permeates the entire organisation.
Every minute of every working day, the boss sets the culture. What he or she says about even minor matters, what they criticise, forbid, or choose to ignore, sets the tone all the way down the chain of command.
Above all, it is the example they set that truly seals the right culture in place, because that demonstrates they really mean it. If the culture is systemically wrong, it isn’t someone else’s fault.
I have given talks about leadership and, of course, lead people in both business and politics and I can think of no better description of leadership than William Hague’s description this morning.
In less than 150 words, I believe it is probably the best description I have ever heard. Everyone in a leadership position should read it.
Thank you, William Hague and The Times, for publishing it.