Leading Execution. Producing Results.
Mid-level leaders are charged with interacting with their direct reports and peers to remove obstacles and provide solutions for anything adversely impacting a strategic initiative. They are typically empowered to make decisions but are often afraid of failure and of being second-guessed by their managers and higher-echelon leaders.
They are expected to achieve results through others, but often lack the requisite skills in people motivation, engagement, feedback, and development. They also have tremendous difficulties in communicating unpopular programs and decisions and in aligning team members with a newly formed strategic vision or change initiatives.
The Glue Between Strategy and Execution
As I wrote in a recent post, mid-level leaders are the glue between strategy and execution. Unfortunately, too many organizational leaders are unaware of this, and thus do not provide mid-level leaders with the training and support they require to produced the results desired.
In a recent DDI study, only 10% of middle managers felt well-prepared for the challenges their businesses were facing. Even more concerning, only 8% felt that driving execution was one of their personal strengths.
However, when exposed to best practices in these areas, and given a set of usable models and techniques, they often deliver beyond the highest expectations. In fact, the DDI research revealed that when leadership development programs for mid-level leaders are high quality, the impact is seen in both leader quality and organizational performance.
This survey also showed a 650% improvement in leadership quality bench strength and a 270% increase in a high-performing group of financial metrics resulting from high-quality mid-level leadership training programs.
To read more on this important leadership topic, please download our free article Mid-Level Leaders Are The Glue Between Strategy and Execution.