O P I N I O N
You don’t achieve success by going solo. You need allies – your manager and your direct reports – to make the load lighter. Mountaineering team: Leads and support
I f you want to climb the highest peak in the world, you can’t do it alone. When George Leigh Mallory scaled Mount Everest in 1922, he had plenty of help. Any successful leader has learned the hard way that you don’t achieve success by going solo. You need allies to make the load lighter.
Balancing the demands of doing your job, taking on new responsibilities, and trying to change habits that have worked for you in the past, can be exhausting and draining. The mantle of responsibility that you need to worry about other things, in addition to getting deliverables to clients on time, can weigh on you like an 80-pound pack. We need not just help, but the right help. Start to look at the allies you need to help you on your journey. Recruiting them is your first step up the mountain. In the next two articles, I’ll talk about building allies. In this article, I’ll focus on the two most critical members: your manager and your direct reports. THE LEAD. When I coach people to define their mountain, or their three-year vision, I encourage them to first share their mountain with the one person directly tied to their success: their
manager. Think of this person as your lead. The person who can take you from here to there on the quickest path. They are responsible for your workload and focus. If they know where you are headed, they can help you get there. Oddly, few emerging leaders take this step. Which is too bad, because how can the person charged with your direction at the firm help you get to where you want to go if you haven’t shared your itinerary? There’s often a fear that it might be too assertive or pushy. But any good manager would rather have someone with drive and direction than someone without a plan, always asking for what to do. What if your mountain is not in perfect alignment with the company mountain? The reality is few of our mountains align perfectly – most likely your
See LEO MACLEOD, page 12
THE ZWEIG LETTER JULY 13, 2020, ISSUE 1352
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