Attn. Senior Management Team:
As a team, we need to take proactive steps and make sure we are on the same page about leadership and strategic management. We need to be a dynamic business that is not afraid to cross the Rubicon, “a figure of speech for taking bold, decisive irreversible action. It is the point of no return and a hugely symbolic statement” (Butler, 1995). Strong leadership abilities are necessary at every step in this crossing, but they are
not the abilities of an individual to impose their way of thinking onto others; they are
more the abilities to listen and come to group decisions proactively and effectively.
There must be a balance between reason and creativity when leaders develop an
effective plan through which goals are assessed and a common vision is founded. As the
process becomes more organized, leaders must make increasingly risky and complex decisions while still keeping this goal in sight and remaining open to comments and constructive criticism.
We all realize in our management duties that organizing a plan requires honing it down and making it workable, and only effective decision-makers who are schooled in the ability to lead positively will be able to make the necessary negations, additions, and alterations that are brought about as the plan begins to enter a real-world frame during the organization process. It is also important at this level to keep a balance of creative solutions and reasonable solutions. Creativity is a great tool when a problem comes up that seems insurmountable through conventional methods and requires thinking outside the box for an effective plan of implementation. “You effectively burn your bridges and face down your best excuses. Move from knowing about the steps to transform your situation to doing something very practical about it” (Butler, 1995). Conventional thinking is also important because it represents the status quo to which many other organizations subscribe and which the public may expect. Therefore, a sense of balance is key, as well as a strong sense of responsibility.
Effective strategic management is also important because it requires the courage and responsibility to make decisions as one of its prerequisites. Leaders may find themselves in difficult situations in which they must work out serious problems, and in these situations they must accept responsibility and act decisively so that, whatever the
outcome, at least a decision has been made. In my role as a new CEO, I will not be content with my team players letting life and decisions pass them by without their being involved in them. This is where leadership is more important than ever, because I want to inspire everyone I work with to look for more than this out of life. This also goes for sales managers and sales performance. If a sales manager is stuck in the rut of thinking that following the status quo is more important than doing well, they are going to do poorly. It will be my responsibility and your responsibility to help change their minds about performance, wake them up, and get them moving towards the responsibility that
they have to their performance and their future. Optimally, this plan will focus on helping the employees see how important concepts of risk are, rather than telling them what to do. They must have the courage to use their own convictions in this regard, and hopefully my leadership and your leadership will help them to see this for themselves, rather than feeling that they have been bossed around or threatened, which will probably make them view performance even more spitefully than they did in the first place. “To know and not to do is not yet to know’ is how Confucius put it over 2500 years ago. Moving from knowing to doing is crossing the Rubicon” (Butler, 1995). Leaders can creatively help along the team dynamic by making decisions, also.
Strategic managers are not acting alone in a vacuum of personal responsibility that only depends on them; their decisions effect others equally validly. There may be a period of quality assessment in which leaders may discuss various ways in which to help team players feel an increasing sense of motivation and the drive to succeed in a positive context by helping leaders with feedback and taking the initiative to present new ideas. An informal and relaxed atmosphere is the best place in which this dynamic occurs. Positive motivation is very important: lower management needs positive role models who are calm under pressure, relaxed, calm, confident, and open-minded. Too often, managers think that by leading, they are somehow better than everyone else. The true leader understands that s/he only leads through the accepting permission of those who make up a team in which everyone has an equal say and is able to provide input and feedback without fearing condescension or even job security. By communicating effectively and using the same language to work towards the same unifying goal, a team will be able to increase its thinking- and decision-making power exponentially.
Butler, J (1995). Crossing the Rubicon. London: Trafford.