Making Yourself Indispensable

From the Harvard Business Review online:

It’s pretty easy and straightforward to improve on a weakness; you can get steady, measurable results through linear development—that is, by learning and practicing basic techniques. But the data from our decades of work with tens of thousands of executives all over the world has shown us that developing strengths is very different. Doing more of what you already do well yields only incremental improvement. To get appreciably better at it, you have to work on complementary skills—what we call nonlinear development. This has long been familiar to athletes as cross-training. A novice runner, for example, benefits from doing stretching exercises and running a few times a week, gradually increasing mileage to build up endurance and muscle memory. But an experienced marathoner won’t get significantly faster merely by running ever longer distances. To reach the next level, he needs to supplement that regimen by building up complementary skills through weighttraining, swimming, bicycling, interval training, yoga, and the like.

So it is with leadership competencies. To move from good to much better, you need to engage in the business equivalent of cross-training. If you’re technically adept, for instance, delving even more deeply into technical manuals won’t get you nearly as far as honing a complementary skill such as communication, which will make your expertise more apparent and accessible to your coworkers.

 

Tags: , ,

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*
*