George Amber says:
One key leadership practice is the continual focus on shaping people’s thinking. The shaping of thinking begins with the leader’s vision and ends with the leader’s behaviours which are the embodiment of the vision.
To paraphase George, I would say that a key practice of leadership speaking is the continual focus on shaping people’s thinking (and feeling).
Leaders have a vision of how things are or should be, and they constantly, tirelessly, some would say fanatically work at communicating that vision to others. And speaking is one of the best ways of doing so.
A leader’s vision can be about
- The group he or she is addressing or talking about – its history, shared values, or mission
- The current situation — how things got to be the way they are, the way things are now, the pluses and minuses of the current situation
- The future — what’s possible, preferable, desireable
The challenge facing leaders in these economic hard times is to have a vision that is both realistic and hopeful. (I don’t know who said it, but it’s true: “It’s better to light a candle than to curse the darkness.”) And the real challenge facing leaders is to keep sharing that vision with their audiences.
Of the leaders today, who do you think is doing the best job at shaping people’s thinking in a positive way?