Get some leadership skills
BUSINESS MATTERS (BEYOND THE BOTTOM LINE) - Francis J. Kong (The Philippine Star) - July 14, 2019 - 12:00am

Claudio Araoz stepped out into the stage and asked this question: “How many among you CEO’s and GM’s have made hiring mistakes?” Almost 4,000 people that attended this business conference in New York raised up their hands including mine. Claudio is an Argentinian author, international speaker, and global expert on talent and leadership, ranked by BusinessWeek as one of the most influential executive search consultants in the world.1

Many of us make hiring mistakes because we are fascinated with the skills of the person, but we practically ignore the personality and character of the person. What is essential is not just the benefit we can get from them but also avoid the harm they may bring us. Some people are so smart and clever but are conniving, scheming, and they are just so deceiving, and they do more harm for you in your organization than the good you were expecting from them. This is the danger of ignoring character and personality and just going for the skills.

Talent, skills and abilities of people should not come at the expense of corporate culture. Every company should have the rule: “No Jerks Around Here Allowed.”

Clients tell me that because of the explosive growth of their companies, massive recruitment takes place and someone who has been with the company one and a half years is promoted to the position of team lead handling a cluster of 6 to 8 people. This new manager has never been trained in leadership skills. And while this person may be technically competent, handling people is not within the person’s competence. And pretty soon the team leader that is designated to lead the team is the very person who drives good people away. They fail to understand their leadership role and responsibility.

When you are the manager of your team and you cause the team to achieve great things then make sure you hand over the credit to your people. When you mess up there is no one to blame. You cannot complain about the bad things happening in the company because you are in charge, the buck stops with you. And the most foolish thing to do is to make “parinig” in the office and post some silly whiny stuff on your Facebook account about negative things you don’t like in certain people or your workplace. This is childish and just plain stupid. As the leader, you are called to make things happen. Get some leadership skills.

And for those who are near the top of the food chain, here are some thoughts for you. Why is there a saying that says: “It is lonely at the top?” It is simple to understand because the higher you go, the more filtered the information is reaching you. They all laugh at your jokes, no one dares tell you what you need to hear for fear that it may jeopardize their careers. Everyone wants to be “safe” near the leaders, and this causes the leader to be out of touch with reality. This is why leaders should be humble, vigilant, approachable, diligent, and leaders need to go out into the firing line and know what is happening. Get some leadership skills.

Young people want to be promoted quick. They want to be rich and famous at a very young age. Look at star athletes and celebrities; give them a few years of fame, riches, and glory, and then they deteriorate. They work in very low-paying jobs, they work as inefficient salespeople being chewed out regularly by their bosses who relish the fact that they are now insulting the once-famous has-beens. Face the fact that there are many mean people in this world. Just think about this. In your early twenties, when you have reached the top. What else is there for you for the remaining years of your life? Better to be slow and sure but grow not only in ability but more importantly in maturity. Get some leadership skills.

I have spent many years doing business, leading people, and now giving leadership training. The one thing I have noticed is that all the newest and sexiest technology in the world cannot accomplish what good leaders with leadership skills can and that is to inspire people to become better and make a difference in this world. Needless to say, to enable them to meet corporate objectives and celebrate the win with everyone. There is still a lot of work to be done. Meanwhile, without exception and with myself included; we all need to get more leadership skills.

(Sign up for two exciting and inspiring days of leadership training with Francis Kong. Attend his highly acclaimed Level Up Leadership seminar-workshop on September 10-11 at Makati Diamond Residences. For registration or inquiries contact April at +63928-559-1798 or register online at “”


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