Leadership - Selection Position Competencies

Leadership – Selection Position Competencies

September 18, 2014

Extreme Leadership – Select Position Competencies

Create Your Job Description Based On Position Competencies
The most powerful leaders create a foundation for their teams to ensure success. I would argue that you have 3 key actions critical to that foundation:

1. Select your metrics/measurements (covered in a previous post)
2. Select the attribute/competencies needed for the positions
3. Select your team (covered in an upcoming post)


Observations: Re-Evaluate What You “Must Have” & Re-Evaluate Your Team
The best leaders are proactive and take time to be strategic towards the future. Part of that strategy is in re-evaluating the qualities or competencies that are required for achievement of your goals. You’ve setyour metrics and you know what you have to do to be successful. Now it’s time to evaluate if you have the right competencies to accomplish it. In other words, not only do you have the right people in place with the right skill set and mind set but do you even know what the right skill set looks like? If you do not, then your team may not be the right team to accomplish the goals you’ve established.

You can invest all of your time and energy in your team but if you have not clearly established what it takes to be successful and evaluated each person on your team then you may get lucky and achieve but you will not achieve at the highest levels possible.

Folks this isn’t the “fun stuff” but it is foundational. You will be glad you did this important leadership step.

I have often been told I should come with a warning label, because I am an HR person’s biggest challenge (aka worst nightmare), so for once I’m going to just give you warning that I am not an HR specialist….I am a leader. My methods have been sometimes viewed as wacky (which you’ll see in many posts on leadership) but those wacky methods have worked for me. So, enter at your own risk is all I am saying.

“Lots of people want to ride with you in the limo, but what you want is someone who will ride with you in the bus when the limo breaks down” – Oprah Winfrey

Designing Your Position Competencies:
First of all don’t feel guilty for putting words or terms in your descriptions that you are passionate about. Obviously avoid the big “no no’s” that come with the territory (discrimination related). For instance if you know you need someone who learns on the fly then put those words in your description of competencies. Or if you know you need to hire a leader that is good at sizing people up then say so. Fancy words are not going to matter when it comes to choosing your team. Real words, real competencies are what matter most.

Are you visualizing your kick ass team yet? You should be at this point.

“We must remember that one determined person can make a significant difference, and that a small group of determined people can change the course of history” – Sonia Johnson

You can use a variety of outstanding books to guide you and one of my favorites (because they keep it real in terms of competencies AND provide coaching tools for improving your team members on these competencies) is called “FYI For Your Improvement; A Guide For Development & Coaching” by Michael M. Lombardo & Robert W. Eichinger.

A few examples of the competencies you’ll see:
Political Savvy
Motivating Others
Intellectual Horsepower
Innovation Management
Standing Alone
Sizing Up People
Managing & Measuring Work

There are plenty to choose from.

Occupational Interests, Thinking Style, & Behavioral Traits

Be sure to balance soft and hard competencies according to the job. If personality isn’t critical to the position but it is to your team and even working well with you, then some personality related competencies should exist. And, if you are designing a team of sales professionals and you know that personality is core but they also need to be proficient in financial aspects of the organization to gain access to key executives then be sure to include mostly competencies that relate to relationships and then a few that relate to business acumen or financial acumen.

Last bit of advice on this topic…please don’t have job descriptions that are pages long. No offense meant to our federal government but have you seen those job descriptions? If they were meant to weed out short attention spans then they designed them well. Get to the point and keep it to one page if possible.

For more guidance or design help in this area please contact victoria@vpstrategies.com