Leadership – Strong Professional Will
Strong Professional Will
The second character trait that Jim Collins and his team found in the Level 5 leaders they labeled Strong Professional Will.
Again, SPW is NOT braggadocios bravado, an “I can do anything” spirit. The study of the Collin’s team revealed a “ferocious resolve” and “stoic determination” in Level 5 leaders. It’s very important here to see the synergy between humility and what GTG calls strong professional will. As I said previously, humility is knowing the truth about yourself, seeing yourself as you truly are. But it’s not about having a poor self-image, it’s about having an ACCURATE one. The SPW of Level 5s is formidable. There is a word in the Bible which is translated “devotion” most of the time. Its meaning is “unremitting continuance”. That is the character of Level 5s. They just don’t quit when it comes to achieving the vision, but their humility keeps their ego in check. They accomplish a “great” deal, but they just don’t give a wit if anyone notices. In fact, they’d prefer that no one did notice.
You may have had a teacher in your younger years or a parent or uncle or aunt, who was what I call “sneaky good”. They had underlying passion, but were “stealthy” about revealing it. They also made it their business to help YOU succeed. This is the synergy and I believe the power of Level 5. Level 5’s are about OTHERS and the CAUSE. They quite literally “lay down their lives”. That doesn’t necessarily mean they are workaholics. It does mean that they FOCUS on why the organization exists, what its purpose is, and (and this is critical) they understand the true purpose of power.
The purpose of power is……….EMPOWERMENT.
Truly equipping others, being “other-centered” in relationships is what a Level 5 is about. Seeing hisher job as helping IT (the organization) and THEM, (the people around them) succeed. That is the essence of the PRACTICE of Level 5s in my view.
The Level 5’s think: “To succeed, I must help my people succeed.” If they fail, I fail. They are absolutely focused on the fulfillment of the vision, and its clarity, they LIVE the values of the organization, but its not and never will be, about them.
As I said Level 5’s are not deluded in their thinking. They have a very accurate perception of who they really are and what they can really do. But their determination should never be “mis-underestimated.”
Let me end this posting with this: Level 5 Leadership is more about character than anything else. You don’t DO it, you ARE it. If you aspire to be a Level 5 leader, find yourself a coach or mentor because you must sign up for the journey. If you’d like me to help you: ph-651-492-8540