How to Lead Smart People | Mike Mister

Summary of: How to Lead Smart People: Leadership for Professionals
By: Mike Mister


Dive into the world of effective leadership with our summary of Mike Mister’s ‘How to Lead Smart People: Leadership for Professionals’. This enlightening guide reveals the essential qualities and skills needed for leading intelligent and capable individuals. Discover the significance of assertiveness, conscious listening, delegation, and decision-making in ensuring success. Learn how to adapt to multiculturalism, find a mentor or a reverse mentor, and involve your team in crafting your company’s future vision. Join us as we explore these valuable insights and empower you with the knowledge to become a smart leader in today’s fast-paced world.

The Power of Assertiveness

Angela, a senior associate, is faced with a difficult choice when her manager asks her to prepare a talk for an upcoming international conference just as she is preparing for her own. However, Angela stands her ground and employs a self-assertion technique called fogging. Assertiveness is essential for leaders to stand up for what they need while still respecting the needs of others.

The Art of Listening

Johan, a managing partner at a law firm, knew that to succeed in acquiring a smaller firm, he needed the support and ideas of his team. Rather than just hearing them out, he utilized active listening techniques such as repeating, paraphrasing, and reflecting to truly understand their viewpoints. By including all team members in the process and ensuring their voices were heard, Johan was able to make a confident decision about the acquisition and motivate the team to work towards its success. The key message here is that conscious listening can lead to better solutions and effective leadership.

Delegation for Effective Leadership

Ayesha’s struggle with delegation teaches us how managing time and empowering our team can lead to success.

Ayesha is the ideal leader, but her team isn’t satisfied with their work, which poses a problem. Her inability to delegate challenging tasks is the culprit as her team is bored with their mundane work. Ayesha is overworked, and her team feels unempowered and not trusted. However, Ayesha eventually realized the key to managing time and empowering teams is delegating tasks effectively. She outlined exactly what was required of her delegated tasks and checked in regularly to ensure her team fully understood their work.

To emulate Ayesha’s successful delegation, develop a prioritized agenda that will guide your team for the next 18 to 24 months. Consider adopting five to seven priorities to focus on to move your team or organization forward, and make a to-do list that encompasses all the tasks required to achieve them while delegating tasks accordingly.

Successful leaders understand the value of delegation, recognizing that it saves time and develops a stronger team. Ayesha found her team was willing to take on new responsibilities, empowered by being trusted with challenging work. Her reputation grew as a leader who not only developed herself but also her team. Over time, her focus on delegation enticed other smart people into her work environment, creating a capable, satisfied, and loyal team.

The Power of Inclusive Decision Making

Eguono and Ade, former classmates, were executives in competing firms. Ade suggested merging their firms to which Eguono felt positive. However, he created a task force with experts from different fields to assess the decision. The merger turned out successful, and Eguono realized that diverse perspectives were essential for a good decision. He learned to improve his decision-making skills by including other people’s opinions. In making important decisions, focus only on the essential information, trust your judgment, and avoid decision paralysis. Smart decision-makers include other people’s perspectives.

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