• July 1, 2006
  • By Colin Beasty, (former) Associate Editor, CRM Magazine

Required Reading: To Lead, Know Where to Go

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Establish executive buy-in and find a champion of change--two very important pieces of advice companies should follow when implementing and/or managing a CRM system. To that end, companies need and want authentic leaders who know where the organization needs to go and how to convince employees to follow them. In Why Should Anyone Be Led by You? Rob Goffee and Gareth Jones of the London Business School draw from more than 25 years of research and consulting work to present the merits of authentic business leaders. CRM's Colin Beasty spoke with Goffee and Jones about their latest book and how it relates to good CRM. CRM magazine:
In the book you state that leaders must sharpen their situation awareness. What do you mean by that? Jones: Effective leaders understand that there are no universals, no guaranteed ways of ensuring their leadership impact. Being sensitive to certain perspectives enables leaders to detect which way the wind is blowing. Good leaders have good situation sensing and are adept at sensing the dynamics at work in different situations. A perfect example of that is a company's IT department. Ensuring end user buy-in on IT projects, such as CRM, can be difficult. Leaders need to stay in touch with these projects. They can have a far-reaching impact on both the company and their employees. CRM magazine: You say one way to ensure situation awareness is for executives to find sources of honest feedback. Why is that? Goffee: To be honest, it can be lonely at the top for executives. Even worse, managers and other C-levels that report to an executive might not be completely truthful because everybody always wants to report positive news to executives. It is essential, therefore, that leaders have sources of safe, critical, honest information and feedback. Again, that's critical when you're talking about implementing a CRM system. A leader needs to be able to accurately gauge how the project is proceeding to effectively manage any changes that need to be made or buttons pushed to find success. Other Page Turners:
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