Allen Swiegers was at Deloitte for 33 years of which the last 10 years was as Chief Operating Officer of Deloitte Africa and he currently Chairs 3 Boards. Gail Cameron met with Allen to discuss the elements that make a good leader.
Top Lessons learnt through leadership experience:
- As a leader one must continuously learn and adapt.
- Leadership is not a popularity contest, you have already been given the role as the leader – now you need to lead.
- Be more concerned about your character than your reputation – it is important to stay true to yourself.
- Make decisions that are the best for the organisation and not just for an individual.
- Surround yourself with THE BEST team. Have a diverse team that shares in your values and fit the culture.
- Remember that there will always be someone that can do things better than you can – appoint them, empower them and trust them. If you need to micro manage you might have made a recruitment error.
- Communicate goals and expectations – give regular and honest feedback.
- Have empathy – Listen and communicate.
- World champion athletes have coaches – why would you not have a coach or mentor of your own?
- Celebrate successes and achievements – having fun creates a culture of recognition.
How to build the confidence and resilience to lead:
- Confidence is built through experience.
- Continue to learn and to adapt. Adapt, adjust and refocus to stay motivated.
- Mistakes happen – learn from them.
- Listen to valued feedback.
- Have hope.
- Trust in yourself and do the basics right. Understand and keep the vision and goal in mind at all time.
Bill Gates said in his lessons of life that life is not fair, get use to it. Life is only 10% of what happens and 90% of how you react.
Enjoy the full interview here: