I was looking at what’s left of my vegetable garden this weekend. Most of the plants are withering. A few are still producing. Some of the autumn vegetables are just reaching their peak. The behaviors and approaches we use as leaders are a bit like my vegetable garden. Some of them used to produce results but now have withered and don’t really work anymore. The conditions have changed and their season is passed. Others still produce some results but their effectiveness over the long term is questionable. They still seem to be having an impact on helping the team achieve results but the payback is diminishing. A final few behaviors are beginning to produce results. They seem to be moving the team forward and are making an impact.
As you look at your garden of leadership behaviors and approaches, it’s probably time for pruning. It’s time to determine which ones are not working anymore and pull them out by the roots. These may be the behaviors that feel very comfortable but comfort and results are two different things. Prune back the others that are having some impact and see if that pruning helps reshape how you think about and apply those behaviors. Finally, fertilize and tend to those leadership approaches that are making an impact. Nurture them and see how they grow.