John Quincy Adams once said, “If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.” It’s a quote that means a great deal to me as we put the finishing touches on the annual Pro to Know issue of Supply & Demand Chain Executive.
The individuals who received the 2017 Pros to Know distinction are definitely an inspiration. As we celebrate these exceptional supply chain leaders, I’d like to take the time to reflect on what makes a leader great.
A quick online search uncovers several personality traits that make just about every leadership list. They are:
- Honesty. Honest leaders inspire through words and through actions. They understand that effective leadership is built on trust that comes from being truly honest, and they realize that strong teams rely on trust to get the job done.
- Communication. Leaders know what needs to be done and communicate it effectively with their teams. Being able to clearly and succinctly describe the tasks ahead is important. If leaders cannot convey their vision to employees, their teams will struggle as they execute these goals.
- The Ability to Delegate. Leaders know the job at hand is too great for them to do alone, and realize that they must rely on every member of the team to carry it out. Trusting the team to execute goals is a sign of a leader’s strength not weakness. Delegating tasks helps leaders capitalize on the strengths of their team and gives them more time to focus more transformative tasks.
- Decisive. Leaders need to make decisions for the good of the entire team and organization. They must be able to properly assess situations and make decisions that help the organization, help the team, and have positive outcomes. As they do this, they must exhibit a high level of confidence in their decisions if they want their teams to follow them.
Those who made the list as Pros to Know embody these traits and more. Nominators told us again and again how their nominees led their organizations to complete new supply chain projects, promote their brands, advance technology and processes, and build teams. The accomplishments of these leaders offer a road map to others looking to leverage their supply chain for competitive advantage.
Congratulations to those who made the 2017 listing of Pros to Know. We look forward to watching how your leadership efforts continue transform the supply chain in the years to come.