When did leaders lose track on the importance of their teams?

I live in a small town in Massachusetts (Winthrop), a town like many others across the country, one that is struggling through a rough economy like all others. Yet, in this small town, the teachers have gone without a contract for two years while the Superintendent receives a huge pay raise, the football team has their uniforms dry-cleaned while the girls basketball team does not have enough shorts.

Okay, you get the point, right? Things are clearly a bit upside down. Leaders, instead of focusing on a culture of Me first, lets all step back and remember the importance of our teams (the teachers above) and our customers (the kids on the basketball team).

•Without a solid team no leader can ever be successful. Before taking that large pay raise and claiming there is no money to go around, think of the people who are making you successful.
•Too many times, especially with regards to teachers, I hear administration, our leaders, blaming the workers for the failures. In any organization you may have one or two people who do not understand, one or two people who fail.

When an entire company, agency, school system, fails, the fault begins at the top. Leaders must remember to take ownership for the good and bad within their organizations. Failure to do so is a failure in leadership. Enough said.


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Andrew D Welch

Thanks for writing this, John. It never ceases to amaze me how so many organizational failings are not the result of poor idea, product, or some sort of organizational bias against success, but are rather the result of a void of strong and positive leadership.

On the topic of recognizing and (more poignantly to your piece, I think) rewarding your people, wrote and posed a similar question yesterday. We seem to be thinking along the same lines this week. Check it out.. http://www.andrewdwelch.com/2010/03/how-do-you-recognize-and-reward-your.html

Again, thanks for writing!