The Art of Leadership Requires The Art of Communication

He just sort of went his own way. Left the others behind and bewildered. Instructions were muddled. Text messages with u and 4 and ty rather than spelled out, complete sentence communiques.

She could talk and talk; and then when you walked away you wondered, “Just what did she say?”

Worse still is the leader who just doesn’t talk, or text, or send emails.

A friend of mine used to say, “Just pick up the phone and call.”

The leadership lesson I’m contemplating today is when a leader does not communicate–either clearly or at all.

We all know them. We’ve worked for them. Maybe when we look in the mirror we see one.

In the Bible I can think of Joseph who clearly communicated–first to the king and then to the people and saved them from starvation. Daniel who spoke clearly to a number of kings and the people who served him.King David, who was able to give clear and explicit orders–even when they were wrong. Nehamiah. Oh, yes, Nehemiah. He spoke clearly to his leader to get permission to travel to Jerusalem. Then he spoke clearly to the leaders of the Jews when he arrived. And he did a great work.

Are you aware of your weakness in communication? I know that I’m a better writer than one-on-one communicator. I hate “just picking up the phone” even when I should.

Recently I know of a situation that I’m trying to rectify where there was almost a total breakdown of communications that almost wrecked a project. One person didn’t speak up. Another didn’t assure that he was undersood when he talked. Worse, most was done by brief email exchanges.

I consulted with an executive director of an agency once where I was trying to get him to see how to communicate with his board. It started from within, that he felt like an equal. That his opinion and vision mattered. And then he needed to take his vision to the board collectively and individually.

What I have learned through bitter experience–a leader must be a great communicator. There is no one correct style of communication. But she’d better have a good one and be good at it.

Tags: , , , , ,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: