Running a successful business requires dedication and leadership. There are only a few naturally born leaders. The good news for the rest of us is that the strengths of leaders are acquired skills. How do you stop “wishing” and start leading? Step one is to develop a backbone!
Backbone is an internal certainty that things will work out as planned; and if not, great leaders always have a fall-back plan! Remember, when you only have one way of accomplishing something you have a thought. When you have a plan with contingencies – you have strategy.
What are the elements of a great backbone?
You can hear the difference between wishbones and backbones. The obvious wishbone phrases are:
“Wouldn’t it be great if…….”
“I wish our team could ……..”
“Why can’t we ………….”
The less obvious phrases that PDA Academy Coaches listen for are:
“That sounds great”
“I think I’ll do that”
“Let’s see what the team thinks”
Train your leadership ear to listen for commitment. Leaders with backbone speak in positive terms – “We will”,” I can!”, “Absolutely!”, “Hold me to it!” The goal of every business owner should be to develop their team to the point that they are leading leaders — not simply training followers. Peak performers want (even demand) to be held accountable. It is very counter-intuitive, but the reality is that the higher the standard, the better the team performs.
Dentist with wishbones instead of backbones are doing a disservice to their team, and ultimately the patient. I’ve often heard doctors express that their team will “work things out”. I’ve rarely seen this happen on its own. Step up, straighten your spine, and lead. It is a privilege to serve, to hold people to a higher standard. Consistency in this area will quickly yield results.