Momentum… a leader’s best friend. There is no better feeling than having the big Mo behind you! It’s hard to get started, but once you have it, it’s hard to shut down. When we have momentum, we’re excited, confident, and productive individually and as a team. Positive momentum gives you confidence. In fact, wise leaders with momentum have a unique humble, yet confident strut in their walk. Ha! I say wise leaders because they know to stay humble and to honor the power of momentum because when it goes away, (and it will if it’s not fed) it’s hard work getting it back.
So, how do we build and sustain the three stages of momentum?
1. Starting Mo
It only takes one person to spark the power of momentum – one person with a positive attitude. One person who brings excitement to the team. One person who is willing to go the extra mile. You don’t have to be the department leader or the most charismatic person on the team.
Your one “must have” leader trait to getting Mo started is BELIEF. Belief in what you’re doing, belief in who you are grooming and leading, and belief in the future. Your belief will be contagious. Others will borrow it until they can muster up their own.
2. Moving Mo
Keeping the momentum going is the tricky part, because it’s tempting to get a little lazy in your efforts to keep building Mo after its rolling. We can get complacent as to how things are going so we start to relax and become overly confident. We think, “My work here is done, now I can relax and go play.” Not so! Beware of that thinking.
Your one must have leader trait to moving Mo is MOTIVATION. Motivating others to step up and lead, motivating the team with recognition and celebrations, and motivating by being “with” your team Many leaders start to separate themselves into an authoritative position of leadership; looking down on their kingdom. Ouch, what a momentum killer! And smile, good gosh almighty, smile with your people!
3. Keeping Mo Alive
Don’t drift away from the key elements that make you successful. If you want momentum to be part of your culture, then stay focused on the behaviors and values that will multiply your momentum. Success can make a leader drift. Their attention is preoccupied by something else and motion starts to slide backwards.
Your one must have leader trait to keeping Mo alive is INTUITION. Intuition to the conditions, intuition to ebb and flow as changes arise, and intuition to balance the old basics with new opportunities.
Mo is one of those things that is hard to put into words, but you know it when you see it. What does the Big Mo look like inside your organization? What stage are you in, and what kind of leader do you need to be?