Episode 45: Leadership is Art because of Vision – Leadership Arts Associates

Episode 45: Leadership is Art because of Vision


The Transcript:

Hello and thank you for joining me for The hrART of It, the place where we talk people and possibilities. My name is Samm Smeltzer, and I am so excited to be your host for this lovely podcast, and this week, if you don’t know, you should know that we are basically sharing with you the five reasons why leadership is an art, and this is all happening in conjunction with Leadership Arts Associates getting ready to make some pretty incredible announcements about the future of Leadership Arts Associates happening today at 10am on Facebook Live, so you want to make sure that you have liked our Facebook page at facebook.com/leadershipisart, and at 10am we’ll be going live, and even if you can’t make the live announcement, you will then have the video readily available in your News Feed.

We have already gone through reasons one through four this week, and just a little bit of a recap, reason number one is you. You are the artist. As a leader, you’re a leadership artist having to know you and who you are and the legacy that you want to leave behind, and then masterfully mastering the skillset of leadership is truly an art. Reason number two is them, so what we value about who we lead is that they’re people not widgets, which means they have individuality and the beauty that that brings to our organization and also brings some challenges, and that is where the art gets involved.

Reason number three is the lines, so talking about the political, organizational lines and boundaries for yourself and for your team, all necessary to know if you’re going to create an effective people strategy to create that organizational masterpiece, and then yesterday, I shared with you the realistic, very real trend that is happening right now that I still believe is a huge root cause to most miscommunication in the workplace is assumptions versus expectations, because reason number four is expectations, which establishing expectations, setting expectations, and holding people accountable to them is truly an art, and so yesterday, we explored the concept of what we assume versus what we expect and that basically, long story short, we assume way too much, and now today I’m here to close it all out with reason number five, which is vision.

Part of being a leader, and this is one of the things that I believe is so different between a manager and a leader, is that a leader has to have the ability to see the vision, the vision for the organization, the vision for the team, and if they can’t, it affects their ability to lead, so not only do you have to be able to know and understand the vision, you have to be able to understand it at a level that you can align with it and know at your core if you believe that you can align with it.

All of the other reasons one through four kind of feed into this, knowing who you are, knowing who they are, knowing the lines and the boundaries that are set, knowing what are expectations and the culture’s ability to hold accountable to those expectations or if they’re just embracing assumptions, that all rolls into them when you are delivered the vision, not only the vision that they are articulating, but the one that you’re truly seeing at the end of this path if you can get onboard with, because really when we’re talking about leadership, it’s your ability to influence and impact the others around you to get them onboard and align with that vision and making that happen. That’s why you get to know your people and connect with your people. That’s why you get to know and connect with yourself. That’s why you set expectations in the first place, and that is why you would even have any interest in navigating the lines of people’s boundaries, your boundaries, and of the organization. The reason why we strategize and put all that together is to obtain this vision, and you want to make sure that the vision that you’re going after aligns with the vision for yourself.

On Leadership Arts Associates, all the work that we have been doing and this announcement that we’re doing at 10am, is all about us getting crystal clear on our vision and who we are. We’ve kind of gone through these cycles, and I know I have personally, of trying to figure out who I am as a leader, who they are, who are the clients, the people that I am serving, the people that I’m leading, what are the lines. Politically, I assumed when you started your own organization that you didn’t have to deal with that anymore, and that’s not true. You deal with it in the community. You deal with it in the other organizations that I’m working with, the people that I partner with, the employees, the new hires, the applicants, all that kind of stuff, there’s lines everywhere that you have to become aware of and navigate, clients, customers, non-customers, prospective customers, all of that is all things that are taken into account.

Then assumptions versus expectations, man, did I have a rude awakening with that, and that’s why I said even I am guilty of it, the assumptions that I made when I started hiring people about what I needed to provide versus not as a small business, and I’m sure that that struggle is not different than anyone else. I guess I assumed that I would have a little bit of an easier time with an HR background, but instead, it just reinforced that at the core, you have to have policies and procedures and some sort of structure there, and that’s why I’m so grateful for our associate Gina Nobile, who has a specialty in process and performance improvement, but her routinely asking for structure pushed me down that avenue, which is what we should have had all along, and I feel … I’m a little bit saddened at the fact that people had to function with that lack of structure, which I think is something that has to happen for every small business, but I feel bad that I wasn’t giving people what they needed to truly thrive in this organization. That’s because I just didn’t know any better.

Talk about an entrepreneurial lesson that I had to go through, and I’ve had to go through several of them. I never dreamed about owning my own business. It was daunting and terrifying at the idea of starting it, and then on top of that, hiring people and bringing other people involved into it as well, and so I did get a reality check on things that I assumed versus expect and how to establish expectations and how do I do that, and we’re still trying to build those processes in place and knowing that to achieve my vision, I have to have that in place.

This entire journey I’ve been going through for the last three years has been necessary for me to get here so I can articulate the true vision of Leadership Arts Associates, what we want it to be versus not getting over the hump of what I believed I had to be doing to be successful versus what I feel called to do or what our organization truly, the purpose that we serve and just owning it, knowing that that is our niche and that is our specialty, and that’s why leadership is an art for those reasons. Really being able to articulate it is going through each of those journeys or paths, mastering them is what makes leadership truly an art. Yes, there’s some creative outlets to achieve those things, but really, it’s the outcomes that make it an art, that makes you an artist. Being able to lead, inspire, and impact people, influence people, does not happen without some hard work, without mastering a skillset, without having a style to yourself, without being able to express yourself in a way that is aligned with all these pieces.

Those are the five reasons that I wanted to share with you how leadership is an art, and this is just the preview and also a little bit of the back story to tell you what’s coming at 10am and what we will be sharing, and I am so excited to just share with you what the future of Leadership Arts Associates, so I hope that you will join me live, and if not, that you’ll at least cycle back through and watch it. I’m sure I’ll probably end up downloading the video and adding it to our YouTube channel so that you can check it out there as well, so thanks again for listening to The heART of It, the place where we talk people and possibilities.

Next week, we’re going to get into our regularly scheduled broadcasted series episodes. We’ll be going back to once a week. My goal is to keep them to about 15, 20 minutes. We’ll see if I’m good at that goal, and next week, we’re going to try a new kind of type of specialty show. It is called Questions From the People, so we’re talking people and possibilities, and I pride myself on being a people watcher. I like to observe behavior. I also like to be very aware of my surroundings, and in doing so, I get to hear some really interesting questions that people are asking each other, and so next week, I’m going to kick it off with a question, and it has to deal with relationships. Our relationships episodes seem to do really well. People … Think every one of us is struggling with trying to have better relationships, whether they’re romantically or not, but it has to deal with relationships. The question came from an observer at the zoo looking at a lion exhibit, so if that intrigues you to join us next week.

Our episodes are going to be debuting every week on Tuesdays at 3pm, so that’s the new time that you can expect all these episodes to launch, so if you’re watching them from a subscription standpoint, and I’m so thankful to all of our loyal listeners who are always all over those episodes as soon as they hit on iTunes and Stitcher, but yes, so next week, we’ll be kicking off our first episode of Questions From the People, and then we’ll be kicking into our, getting into our normal shindig of The heART of It, where you will have goodness, and this will be the place to be to talk about people and possibilities, but until next week, I’m Samm Smeltzer, and thanks for listening. Bye.

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