The following may sound like characteristics listed in a classified ad for an executive/leadership position: consistency, strong work ethic, ability to connect with others, plan/vision oriented, team builder, high regard for ethics and team morale, and a relentless focus on execution. This would be a good list for an ad because these are some of the primary characteristics of high performing leaders who go un-noticed.
Why do the best go un-noticed? The simple answer is that they quickly establish what can be expected of their leadership, and do so through their actions. Once expectations are established, things are so consistent in regards to all the characteristics mentioned, that great leadership is a constant expectation of others, and it is what gets delivered. We can all think of great leaders and most of them embody the characteristics mentioned above. Their people love them; their organization thrives in both the good and bad economic times; they always have a plan (and make changes when necessary); they are always aware of their team’s progress in regards to execution; and their team never doubts their morals/ethics, or their commitment to the organization’s customers.
These leaders are of course noticed for their accomplishments, but when it happens it is rarely a surprise. It is expected. They were noticed many years ago. Many people have already hitched their wagons to them because of the positive gut feeling that happens quickly when in their presence. In essence, they are the leaders of leaders because becoming un-noticed is the closest we can ever get to mastering Leadership.