Leaders are responsible for envisioning the future and executing the plan to make that future a reality. This is growth: current state, new results, better future state. Leaders manage two types of growth.
The leader is responsible for the growth of their company. They’re responsible for things like revenue growth, profit growth, increased market share, and the growth of new capabilities. This is true whether you are the CEO, COO, CFO, CSO, department head, manager, shift supervisor, or team leader.
This type of growth as a responsibility is expected of leaders. But the second kind of growth is the catalyst for the first type of growth. And often it isn’t given the same attention as the first.
The growth of a company is accelerated when the leader focuses on the second, equally important type of growth: the growth of the individuals that the leader is responsible for leading.
In order for a company to grow, the individuals within that company also need to grow. They need to grow by adopting new beliefs of what is possible, new beliefs of what is necessary, and new ideas about who they are. Einstein said it this way, “We cannot solve our problems with the same level of thinking that created them.”
The individuals inside the company also need to grow by gaining new capabilities, new competencies, and new skill sets. The greater the capabilities and skill, the more easily and more certain you produce new results.
Leaders spend a lot of time and energy working on the first type of growth, the growth of the company’s results and financial metrics. Great leaders invest time in the second type of growth, the growth of the individuals that produce the first type of results, knowing that this is the fastest, surest way to produce those results.