In “The Secret, What Great Leaders Do and Know” Ken Blanchard and Mark Miller share some key components of what can make leaders successful. The story revolves around the character, Debbie, who is sinking quickly in a leadership position. In this light literary form we are quickly immersed into a situation that faces many organizations: persons promoted due to individual success, to positions of leadership without much leadership skills or on-going training for further success in a new position. However this company under the leadership of Jeff, the new president recognized the need for mentoring and holding accountable young leaders. As Debbie enters the mentoring program her mentor is Jeff.
The main points of the book are revealed in the dialog of the monthly mentoring meetings. These points are quickly remembered through the acronym SERVE.
See the Future
Engage and Develop Others
Value Results and Relationships
Embody the Values
However leaders and companies can learn just as much from the process as from the acronym. Here are some points I came away from the process.
A company must see the need and intentionally mentor young leaders.
- The highest levels of administration must see the need to invest time in the process of mentoring.
- There was a beginning and ending to the process.
- In mentoring a process for accountability is established.
- Mentorees should be challenged to duplicate the process with other employees.
I would recommend the book; it is short and will take less than an hour to read. More importantly than reading the book is implementing the process and the definition of leadership: SERVE