Top 12 reasons leaders fail:
- Neglecting culture. Culture building is job-one for all leaders.
- Lack of paranoia. The paranoid think about what could go wrong and make contingency plans.
- Bitterness, grudges, and resentment. People fail. Successful leaders allow fresh starts.
- Task rather than people focus.
- Accepting complexity.
- Lack of political awareness. Successful leaders build relationships with powerful players.
- Failure to sell successes and accomplishments with humility. If the right people don’t know your value, you aren’t valuable.
- Trusting the untested. Talent without a track record is dangerous.
- Fearing great talent.
- Postponing tough conversations.
- People pleasing.
- Refusing to adapt. Adaptability is the greatest ability.
Bottom 20 reasons leaders fail:
- Stagnant pool of friends. Keep your current friends and develop new.
- Disconnecting with others due to the blindness of power.
- Failure to build strong teamwork.
- Neglecting to develop skills, both theirs and those of others.
- Needing to outshine others rather than letting others shine.
- Confusing leadership with management.
- Cowardice. It takes courage to lead. If you don’t think so, you haven’t led.
- Brown nosing those above and neglecting those below.
- Too much doing and not enough helping others do.
- Fence sitting.
- Lack of clarity.
- Lack of follow through.
- Rejecting uncomfortable ideas.
- Excluding themselves from accountability. “Do as I say, not as I do.”
- Lack of alignment with board members and organizational values.
- Relying on authority.
Bonus material: “Ten Reasons Leaders Fail, Plus ONE” – Based on a conversation with the CEO of Circuit City.
What’s at the top of your list of reasons leaders fail?
What should be added to the complete list of reasons leaders fail?