The Three Roles of a Leader
By Mark Calabrese
As leaders (in IT and otherwise), our job consists of three roles:
- Identify new opportunities for the organization, team or group to add business value. This involves building, maintaining and leveraging relationships with various stakeholders within the business and facilitating regular back and forth communication and dialogue between business operations resources and your own business technology resources. As leaders, we are expected to be on the lookout for the team to ensure we identify opportunities and exploit them to our business partners’ best interests.
Remove obstacles and barriers to success. This means either obtaining resources, facilitating discussions, or making a phone call to make a problem go away. As leaders, we are the final point of escalation and our teams are counting on us to make problems go away. We are expected to always be communicating and maintaining relationships that will enable us to be a resource to our teams when they encounter barriers to execution.
Preserve, Protect and Defend the teams’ culture. This means ensuring that the team HAS an identifiable and USEABLE culture that is focused on execution, delivery and sound core values that resonate within the team and can be used not only to guide the team from a long-term strategic perspective, but from a day-to-day tactical perspective. As leaders, we are expected to make the difficult decisions regarding resources – whether hiring, coaching or firing – to ensure that the team’s execution and delivery-focused culture remains intact.
By focusing on these three key activities, we not only serve our teams and their best interests in adding value to our business, but we also build and maintain a solid partnership with our business operations colleagues in helping them gain and keep a competitive edge.
© 2011, Mark E. Calabrese
Mark Calabrese is an IT leader, speaker, blogger, mentor/coach with over 20 years of experience in a wide variety of leadership roles in appliction development and maintenance, infrastructure, vendor management, PMO/project management, IT finance, and IT solution/service delivery. Mark is currently the PMO Director for Hubbard One, the leading provider of marketing, business development, and practice management solutions for law firms. You can read more of Mark’s writings at www.mecmusings.com or can contact him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.