The 8 most important skills of the best technology leaders

2. Go see

One of my early managers told me “Don’t look with your eyes, look with your feet” and that has stayed with me.

You shouldn’t spend all your time in offices and meeting rooms. Otherwise your only source of information is from meetings, reports, email, and reports.

If you want to know what’s happening, you have to spend a lot of time where your teams are actually working.

This will allow you to perform one of your key leadership roles – being an organisational unblocker.  Find issues that plague your teams, that they cannot solve themselves – and then prioritise ‘killing’ these impediments.

3. Practise extreme ownership

All responsibility for success or failure rests with the leader. The leader must own everything in their World. There is no one else to blame.” – Jocko Willink and Leif Babin

Taking responsibility is the essence of Extreme Ownership.

As a leader you must admit failures, take ownership of them and develop a plan to turn them around. Always accept the blame for your team – even if it means getting fired.

Teams which make excuses and blame others never improve their performance.

4. Be bold

Standout leaders who make a huge difference are are bold.

This isn’t being recklessness or careless, taking needless risks or bullying people.

Boldness is about staking your own credibility on a course of action that you wholeheartedly believe in.  It’s about taking a risk that you’re right, even if no one else agrees with you.

Think about Henry Ford building the Model T, or Steve Jobs developing the iPhone.  These ideas would have sounded crazy to anyone apart from the bold leaders who had the courage of their convictions.

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