A phenomenon that seems to have become more prevalent today is how leaders within organizations are all talk and no delivery. In fact, they seem much more consumed with the optics of their branding than execution or customer satisfaction. It reminds me of the Wizard of Oz. “Don’t look at that man behind the curtain.” Instead, believe my buzz words, my rhetoric, or as we like to call it in the consulting services business, “Consultant Speak.”
So, how does a company go from truly caring about an outcome to covering their flank by way of damage control? Like most everything else, it starts at the top. Somewhere along the way leadership has lost their direction which inevitably means the company has lost their identity. What’s crazy is that if you were to talk to these so-called leaders, they would likely attempt to finesse you with a litany of oratory gymnastics that not only defend their decisions, but also claim success. You know, doubling down on bad ideas.
They’ll say things like it’s all intentional and part of a greater strategy. I especially love it when they weave in a bunch of high-brow complexity as a means of throwing water on what is obviously a foiled base-line strategy.
That said, there are ways of succeeding despite out of touch leadership. It starts with downstream empowerment. Where your client-facing field personnel take the autonomous initiative to make decisions that ensure successful execution. If these out of touch leaders want to self-promote and essentially speak in tongues, fine. Just don’t allow it to inhibit your field generals from executing on the customer’s behalf. Of course, this isn’t an ideal scenario, and if it doesn’t work, then wholesale leadership changes need to occur, immediately.