Born in Austria, Peter Ferdinand Drucker was an American, educator, author and management consultant. His writings have paved the philosophies and practical plans of the modern business. He is the inventor of key concepts, including self-control as well as management by objectives.
He has even been described as “the founder of modern management.” There are various lessons from his teachings that could prove to be useful for high performing leaders. Here are some key examples to keep in mind.
Effectiveness May Be Learnt
This was a key chapter of one of Peter Drucker’s books. He firmly believed that executives who did not understand how to make themselves effective would set the wrong example to other employees in the business.
Drucker maintained that being effective did not require people to have particular gifts or special aptitude or even advanced training. Instead, he suggested that effectiveness could be learned until it became a habit. Drucker also stated that without the right level of effectiveness, there was no performance.
While imagination, knowledge, and intelligence are key assets, they are only useful when effectiveness ensures that they deliver the right results. Drucker suggested that several habits need to be mastered for an executive to be effective. This includes building on strength while focusing on outward contributions.
Focus On A Few Key Areas
Drucker believed that high-performance leaders should focus on particular, major areas where the right level of performance will provide fantastic results. In other words, it’s important to ensure that you focus.
For instance, you might be thinking about scaling your business and your team. During this process, you may want to complete two processes at the same time - scale and optimisation. It is possible to balance your resources to ensure that you can tackle both these goals.
However, it would be best if you didn’t have the same team members focusing on both goals at the same time. Instead, a small team should concentrate on optimisation with the rest scaling the business. You probably will have a list of different tasks for a particular business day. However, there will always be a task that will deliver a significant level of improvement. This is the task you should focus on.
Making Strength Productive
The concept behind this lesson is to focus on both your strengths and your weaknesses in different ways. You need to ensure that you are providing the right level of support to weak areas to guarantee that they don’t affect your company. At the same time, you can boost the effectiveness of areas where you are strongest.
To do this, you need to make sure that you are aware of your strong points. It’s important to lean into your core strengths and know-how; these make you a good leader.
High performing leaders should surround themselves with people who are strongest in areas where they themselves are weakest.
The best way to think of this is like a sports team. When you’re on a sports team, there are always different positions. These are filled by people with key strengths. A person in one position won’t have the same skills or strengths as those in another. Drucker believed that when focusing on the key strengths, it is possible to ensure that weaknesses become irrelevant.
Make Integrity A Top Priority
Drucker knew the value of integrity and made it a top priority of his teachings. Indeed, he firmly believed that you could not fool people about your character. In just a few weeks of working with someone, Drucker suggested that subordinates would be able to tell whether they were working for someone who had strong integrity of character.
This is a more crucial factor than being well-liked or even being competent in the role. Drucker suggested that workers would forgive several shortcomings in a leader. This included levels of ignorance, insecurity and bad manners. But they would not forgive a lack of integrity.
Duty Before Self
Drucker suggested that a leader has two key duties. They have a duty to complete a particular mission, and they have a duty to ensure that they are taking care of the people they are responsible for. The needs of the self should come after fulfilling these two duties. Drucker suggested that this should be the basis of all elements of leadership and that a leader should not act in their own interests.
Instead, they must maintain a focus on the interests of the worker as well as the customer. Drucker saw this as a key weakness of the American management system when he was alive.
Ultimately, leaders need to make sure that they are putting the task first beyond their own beliefs or even their biases. A leader can be the most intelligent person in the room, but they must make sure that they are taking into account the needs of every member of staff.
Manage Time Effectively
Executives mustn’t begin a process by thinking about a task that they need to complete. Instead, they need to consider the time that they have and discover where the time goes. It will then be possible to effectively manage the time and ensure that unproductive demands can be cut back completely.
Drucker believed that time could be consolidated into the largest, possible continuous units. Drucker suggested that this process could be explained as recording time, managing time and consolidating time effectively.
It is also possible to use time as a senior leader in a business to gain the most benefits from other members of the team. You can sit down with those in lower positions and take the time to find out key information. This will allow you to look at opportunities available to exploit and dangers that have not been checked.
Taking time in an area like this is crucial because, without it, workers won’t have the right level of enthusiasm. They instead become time-servers, and they use their energy in a way that will not benefit the organisation as much as it should.
Drucker warned that delegation as a concept is easy to misunderstand. Instead, it’s important to remove jobs that can be completed by someone else. By doing this, delegation is no longer necessary, and individuals can complete their own work.
Know What You Can Contribute
Drucker believed that the effective high performing leader would know what they can and should contribute. They will understand how key options will impact performances and the results of an institution that is served.
The main focus here is on responsibility. While many leaders focus downward, their concentration is then on the efforts instead of the results. It is important not to get lost in what the organisation is offering you. Downward focus makes an individual and even a leader, a subordinate by nature. Those who take responsibility for their actions and their place in the business will be effective leaders.
Performance needs to occur in three areas. It must direct results while building value in the business. By focusing on what you can contribute to the business, you will be improving the standards and the sights of every team member.
Drucker believed that this could be achieved through the right level of self-development.
High performing leaders should ask themselves what strengths they can use to improve the business and how they can put these strengths into practice.
Taking these lessons by Drucker and implementing them into your business model will improve your position as a high performing leader.