What Visionary Leaders See

 
 
By Dennis McCafferty  |  Posted 08-03-2014 Email
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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    The Outsider's Experience
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    The Outsider's Experience

    They're skilled at playing the role of the outsider looking in, to honestly and fairly evaluate how shareholders, internal users and customers will perceive of a particular product, solution or integration.
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    An Internal Perspective
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    An Internal Perspective

    They examine themselves to assess what they did to affect change, as opposed to how external factors did so.
  • Previous
    Things That Aren't There
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    Things That Aren't There

    Visionary leaders often acknowledge events which did not happen while still influencing an outcome.
  • Previous
    A Third Choice
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    A Third Choice

    They avoid the pitfalls of either/or thinking, and weigh various alternatives to open up a new range of opportunities.
  • Previous
    The Benefits of Unconventionality
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    The Benefits of Unconventionality

    They'll bring in unexpected meeting attendees, project participants, and others, thus encouraging fresh ideas and approaches.
  • Previous
    New Data Resources
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    New Data Resources

    They're curious about data which exists outside typical areas of focus, to consider how it can benefit the organization in novel ways.
  • Previous
    Trouble Before Trouble Happens
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    Trouble Before Trouble Happens

    They recognize the warning signs of a slippery slope well in advance, to help their teams avoid possible disasters.
  • Previous
    The Fine Line Between Caution and Cynicism
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    The Fine Line Between Caution and Cynicism

    While they're good at anticipating potential failure points, and don't allow this quality to lapse into productivity-sapping negativity.
  • Previous
    The Real Story
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    The Real Story

    They look beyond razzle-dazzle moves on the part of vendors, partners and others to evaluate the real value of a proposal.
  • Previous
    The Possibilities of
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    The Possibilities of "Why Not?"

    It's the question which leaders always ask, as they drive themselves and team members to expand beyond their perceived limitations.
 

It's often said that great athletes—Peyton Manning, LeBron James and Derek Jeter immediately come to mind—command the kind of vision which sharply elevates their game IQ. The same can be said of highly successful CIOs and other senior leaders who take their organizations to new levels of accomplishment. Beyond a superior work ethic, experience and institutional knowledge, they have a knack for seeing things that others don't. The new book, The Power of Noticing: What the Best Leaders See (Simon & Schuster/available in August), focuses on translating this special capability to real-life business situations, such as project oversight, decision-making and negotiations. Author Max Bazerman cites real-life news and business events ranging from the financial crisis of 2008 to Enron to the Challenger disaster to illustrate what can happen in the absence of such vision. The following 10 "what visionary leaders see" examples for CIOs are adapted from the book. Bazerman is co-director of the Center for Public Leadership at the Harvard Kennedy School, and the Jesse Isidor Straus Professor at the Harvard Business School. For more about the book, click here.

 
 
 
 
 
Dennis McCafferty is a freelance writer for Baseline Magazine.

 
 
 
 
 
 

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