Behaviours to admire

Blog Nov


As the season for recognition and awards progresses, stories are shared of the behaviour which defines excellence in organisations and their leaders.

With the privilege of coaching directors and their advisors over many years, delivering chartered qualifications and judging professional awards, common themes are apparent to me. They highlight the behaviour we admire and seek to emulate.


Explaining why – Organisations, initiatives and individuals who can clearly articulate their purpose are able to attract and retain the interest and attention of their audiences. Their decisions and behaviour are continuously judged against that purpose.

With a human face – It is easy to intend being clear about what you believe in, taking decisions in the light of those beliefs and behaving in a way which is consistent with your stated principles and values. Living your values at organisation and individual level takes effort but pays dividends. Values in practice are evident in the opportunities you choose not to pursue as well as the actions you take.

In conversation – Award-winning organisations and individuals recognise the importance of visible and continuous dialogue with their stakeholders. Their project Gannt-charts have ‘engagement activity’ as the top line. Effective conversations listen to the unfiltered voices of diverse people and respond in a way which demonstrates appreciation for ideas contributed and an understanding of concerns.  

Working together - Collaborative ventures, based on common understanding and commitment, deliver value for all participants. Identifying individuals and organisations with complementary strengths provides a foundation for creating productive and enjoyable relationships. Award winning partnerships are defined by natural curiosity, the desire to look beyond the current and obvious and anticipate changing trends and the opportunities they provide.  

For the greater good – Altruistic leaders, clearly motivated by more than self- interest, attract loyal followers. They understand that leadership is about more than directing and controlling. The generosity of spirit which enables others, characterises excellence. The media have labelled the late Queen Elizabeth II as a globally recognised exemplar of ‘servant leader’. Recognising the organisation as a separate legal entity, identifying the expectations and aspirations of all stakeholders and balancing the collective good are all characteristics of award-winning organisations.

And delivering - Promises made and kept inspire trust and confidence. They epitomise an organisation’s or individual’s lived brand. Intentions are laudable but delivery is essential. Excellence is demonstrated by behaviours that pay continuous attention to progress against objectives and that track both the achievement of outcomes and the approach taken.

July 21, 2020

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July 08, 2019