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Leadership: Bill Clinton’s and my view of it

I’ve always thought that this rather unappealing image is a great metaphor for leadership. Companies live or die by the quality of their leadership at the very top and I get asked all of the time what our view of leadership is. Not surprising I guess, given we run courses for children in this very skill.

For me, Bill Clinton’s view of leadership has always been the most compelling. He believes that leaders do four things. They envision, they explain, they include and then they execute. Very clear and focussed and it’s a process I’ve tried hard to use in my business every day. Envisioning is about working out why your company exists. It’s the kind of thing that gets you up in the morning and it gets you through the tough times. Ours is to inspire a generation of children to become the very best they can be through their relationships, their well-being and their own sense of purpose. That does get me up in the mornings.

Explaining your vision requires a relentless focus on the benefit of your business to your key customers. No parent of ours cares how many courses we have. They do care that our courses result in better life skills and better results for their children. To include is to collaborate and to create a team where the sum of the parts really is greater than anything else. Right people, right room, right time.

Finally, execution is everything. As the saying goes, execution really does eat strategy for breakfast if you don’t get that bit right. A very wise man once told me that companies revolve around the one hundred and eleven point rule. You get one point for an idea, ten points for turning that idea into a concept, but one hundred points for making it happen. In the end, execution is everything so it deserves the lion’s share of the points.

Bill Clinton

Bill Clinton is spot on. Envision, explain, include and execute your way to success. Oh, and concentrate on the hundred pointers.

If you’d like to find out more about our Life Skills Courses, including our Leadership Programme, then please click here

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