Four Core Competencies for Effective Leaders

During the past several Exchange Post articles, and more recently in my monthly “Taking Care of People is Good for Business” messages, you may have noticed a focus on the need for us to further develop our competencies as we improve ourselves to be even more effective. People who have the best competencies have what I like to refer to as the “It Factor;” they exhibit traits that stand out from the crowd.

Whether assisting customers, setting a planogram, managing a refund or developing a new program, we all contribute, but it is those who make the ordinary extraordinary who raise the game of everyone around them. These are the people with the “It Factor” who take the time to invest in strengthening their core competencies.

“To truly be successful, we must go beyond process and take a hard look at our core competencies”

So much of our time is focused on accomplishing the next task that personal development regrettably often gets overlooked. To truly be successful, we must go beyond process and take a hard look at our core competencies. At the Exchange, we have identified four core competencies to be effective leaders, associates and teammates:

People Leadership

  • How are you developing your team and those around you?
  • In what ways do you encourage them to grow?
  • Are you communicating with your teammates? Do they understand what’s going on in the organization?

Self Leadership

  • How do you continue to grow yourself?
  • What new tasks do you take on to keep your skills fresh?
  • Do you deliver on the commitments you make?

Thought Leadership

  • Do you consider the entire issue before making a decision?
  • Do you embrace new programs and show enthusiasm when you explain them to others?
  • Do you regularly review your financials to understand where opportunities for improvement exist?
  • Do you communicate current events and corporate financial news?

Results Leadership

  • Are you regularly focused on customers and how to provide an enhanced experience?
  • Are you all in when it comes to meeting your facility and our corporate objectives?
  • Do you have a plan for how you accomplish your role on a daily, monthly and annual basis?

LEX has many resources to help with competency development. A wealth of information about effective retail skills, including engagement, attentiveness and business competencies are also available on the Internet.

Noted leadership author John C. Maxwell says, “Reflection turns experience into insight. It’s not the experience that’s the teacher, it’s the reflection. Reflection says go back to what you’ve done and give it some thought. Out of that reflection, pull something out that you have learned or observed that is going to help you be a better person.”

Conducting an inventory

Maxwell’s charge reminds us all of the necessity to conduct an inventory of our competencies prior to beginning a journey of improvement. How have you developed yourself? How can you grow further? Take a look in the mirror to determine where opportunities exist.

We have a robust workforce of dedicated associates who embody what it means to serve. Other than wearing a military uniform, there is no greater honor than serving those who serve. With this awesome privilege comes great responsibility.

Make a choice now

As Director/CEO Tom Shull said recently, “. . your steadfast commitment proves the Exchange is all in to serve those who serve.” Simply stated, our customers deserve the very best from each of us every day.

Make the choice to begin a process of self-examination and put a plan together to deliver the level of performance the selfless service of the best customers in the world truly deserve. I look forward to seeing your competency improvement plans as I visit stores as we strengthen our collective “It Factor.” 

Thank you for all you do in serving the best customers in the world.

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