The 8 Rules of Leadership by Jack Welch - Jibran Bashir Leadership Institute

The 8 Rules of Leadership by Jack Welch

Being a leader is not an easy task. Daily balancing is required. As a Leader, you have a responsibility to strike a balance between the competing demands of short- and long-term results. So, what do leaders do? Do leaders follow a set of rules? In the famous 2009 book winning, co-written by Jack Welch and Suzy Welch, the former CEO of General Electric states as much.


These are his guiding principles for leadership:

1. Leaders relentlessly upgrade their team, using every encounter as an opportunity to evaluate, coach and build self-confidence.

As we know, a team who has good players always wins. A good leader invests in the team to upgrade them. They do not waste any opportunity and learn from every encounter. They focus their time and energy on coaching, evaluating, and boosting the self-confidence of their team members. In short, they do people development integrated into every aspect of your regular goings-on. Acknowledgement is the key to performance. So leaders should recognize and acknowledge the performance of their team. However, they can be motivated to grow more.


2. Leaders make sure people not only see the vision but also live and breathe it.

Good leaders always have a vision. They inspire others to buy into their future idea. They frequently discuss their goal and reinforce it with incentives, which could take the shape of a salary, bonus, or another noteworthy acknowledgement.

Even without the incentives, communicating your vision as a leader can inspire your team to complete even the most challenging tasks.


3. Leaders get into everyone’s skin, exuding positive energy and optimism.

Feeling comfortable and motivated is one of the essential ingredients to start engaging and developing new ideas. Effective leaders will drive motivation and positivity through their teams. Effective leaders fight the negative forces of life and encourage their teams with a high level of optimism that keeps members upbeat. Nothing lowers team morale like a leader who lacks enthusiasm or engagement. You have the dual roles of coach and cheerleader.


4. Leaders establish trust with candour, transparency and credit.

True leaders establish their trust with fairness, sincerity, and honesty. Trust always happens when leaders are transparent, candid, and keep their word. Leaders build trust by acknowledging others when they deserve it. They hate it when someone else claims credit for their idea or hard work. You must set an example for your team if you want them to be open with you.


5. Leaders have the courage to make unpopular decisions and gut calls.

Leaders always trust their guts, regardless of what others think. Sometimes many people can identify issues, but they are unable to take decisions accordingly. But great leaders always dare to take bold steps and believe in their intuitions. Since your decisions may affect the organization’s overall success, Decision making is what you’ll be judged on as a leader. Your team will support a leader’s decisions if there is openness, trust, and a clear vision.


6. Leaders probe and push with a curiosity that borders on scepticism, making sure their questions are answered with action.

To get bigger and better solutions, Welch says leaders probe proposals and presentations by asking questions and stirring up a healthy debate.

A great leader always welcomes questions from the audience. They don’t irritate when people ask questions again and again. Challenging your employees is an art, not a science. Each individual requires a unique approach. It’s a Leader’s job to get their best without diminishing their productivity.


7. Leaders inspire risk-taking and learning by setting an example.

The idea of leaders setting an example is not new. We all react better when senior leaders model the behaviours they want from their people.

Leaders embrace risk-taking and learning. Leaders serve as role models and encourage team members to try new things without worrying about failing. Exploration and experiments are crucial aspects of progress and growth. Make sure everyone on your team is comfortable making errors.


8. Leaders celebrate!

Leaders always celebrate even small wins. Small winnings are the chunks to make bigger winnings. Celebrating makes people and the team more motivated. People feel like winners because celebrations give them a sense of recognition and positive energy. Don’t be afraid of celebrating early and often. Small victories lead to complacency.


These are the 8 rules of leadership, and anyone can follow them to success. However, they’re not steps instead; they’re things that will come up daily in many shapes and forms. Sticking to these rules ultimately keeps you on the path of leadership.

Author: Ms. Mariam
Head of Research & Communication

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