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Leading From The Middle Of The Organization

April 3, 2012

Many great organizations have great leaders at the top of the organization in roles such as the CEO, COO, CFO and President.  Although these men and women are the face of the organization, the reality is that 99 percent of all leadership takes place in the middle of an organization.  The question that I keep hearing from my many years of experience in various leadership roles is this, “Can I still lead if I am in the middle of the organizational hierarchy.  The answer is, ‘Yes’.  I have seen many examples where leadership has come from the shop floor from people that want to contribute and get things done.

 Good leaders learn to lead from whatever level in the organization they are at.  They learn to lead up, down and across.  They become 360o Leaders.  These leaders learn to influence people at every level of the organization.  During my many years of experience in manufacturing operations roles, I was always on the lookout for these types of people.  People that can influence others in the organization (no matter what level they are at), are the hidden gems in any organization.  These are the people that make things happen, and can be good additions to any succession planning strategy.

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