Monday, March 16, 2009

How to Lead When You're Not the Boss

- A Harvard Business Publishing Article

Real leadership is never a matter of mere formal authority. Leaders are effective when other people acknowledge them as such--by listening seriously to their ideas, valuing and following their suggestions for action, and turning to them for advice.

Opportunities to lead aren't limited to times when you have formal authority over a particular team or venture. When you step forward and demonstrate leadership, you will contribute value to the project or enterprise--and strengthen your leadership skills.

In their book Lateral Leadership: Getting Things Done When You're Not the Boss (2nd ed., Profile Books, 2004), Harvard negotiation specialist Roger Fisher and coauthor Alan Sharp lay out a useful five-step method for leading when you are not formally in charge. Its steps can be applied to virtually any project you're involved in or team or meeting you participate in.

Five-Steps include:
  • Establish Goals
  • Think systematically
  • Learn from experience--while it's happening
  • Engage others
  • Provide feedback

Click here to read the complete article with more explanation on each of the five steps mentioned above.

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