Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Three Impact Points of Leadership

Over the past 20 years of my business career, I have had the chance to lead a wide variety of teams. Ranging from my first experience of leading a small brand team when I was brand manager of Breyers Ice cream at Kraft Foods (thank you Chis, Alan and Marcello for putting up with such a novice boss) to my latest role where I had the privilege of leading a large, highly performing, sales organization at The Coca-Cola Company. Regardless of size or structure, I learned that leadership is an art, and very different from management. I learned that you "manage" projects/timetables/initiatives/ etc but that you "lead" people. While this delineation seems simple, it is also vital! I have often seen leaders attempt to "manage" their teams in the same way they "manage" their projects, usually with very little success.

Through the course of my career, and through a great deal of trial and error, I started experiencing that my "leadership" actions seemed to be centering on three areas of my team's "beings". Now I don't mean anything metaphysical by this, but I do mean that my actions seemed to be focused on three areas or "impact points" of my teams.

1.) their minds
2.) their hearts
3.) their hands and feet.

what follows is a review of this idea that I wrote a few years ago and recently edited. Take a look and let me know what you think!

Thee Impact Points Thee Impact Points levisay7349


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Bill:

    Like we say in the PR business, "What do you want the audience to think (head), feel (heart) and do (hands)?"


  3. Bill,

    The role of the leader is not only the most critical, it is frequently the least understood. Although I find your model simple to understand, the challenge to follow it is almost overwhelming. Many leaders recognize the accountability associated with their responsibility, even if they don't know how to be an effective leader. With these three impact points, the leader is reminded of key questions that he/she should constantly ask themselves with regard to the performance of the organization and their effectiveness.

    Thanks for challenging me.

    Galen B.

  4. Galen,

    thnks so much for your comment! One thing I have recently suggested to a consulting client of mine is to put these three "impact points" on the top of all of his call plans,destinations documents, etc so that anytime he is preparing to meet or communicate with his team, he keeps these three priorities in mind.