Developing Great Leaders that Bring Dynamic Impact to the Organization

September 18, 2014

We just wrapped up another successful month of Round Table Meetings. Thank you all for participating and bringing your unique experiences to the table.

The topic discussed during this month’s meetings was: “Developing Great Leaders that Bring Dynamic Impact to the Organization.” 

No matter what type of organization or industry we are in, people are the single most essential ingredient in getting the job done. People with different strengths and weaknesses, talents and skills. Finding the dynamic leaders that will help to propel the mission forward is an ongoing process of searching and developing.

Below is a compilation of what Business Leaders had to say on this ever important issue.

Kalamazoo Tuesday, September 9, 2014

1. Identify

2. Develop

3.Impact for Results


  • Christ selected leaders from all different walks of life. When they made mistakes, there was no punishment, they corrected them.
  • Everyone is developing
  • Look for people who want to do something vs. someone who wants something to do.
  • Those that talk are not always the right people.  Sometimes we miss the introvert.
  • Look at the actions and results.  Are they going somewhere? Do others follow them naturally as an unofficial leader?
  • Beware of someone following a leader in the wrong direction.
  • How do you give people opportunities? Stretch, challenge and observe them.
  • Let them make mistakes
  • Can anyone become a leader?  No – not everyone wants to be a leader either.
  • Leadership is a process, we watch to emerge and then develop.
  • Good leaders invest in self-development.
  • Illustration:  Sport–emerging stars get big contracts and big money, but it can then end in a lack of motivation.  Keep the fire alive by not over doing it.  Giving too much praise, affluence or premature title.  Balance is key. Compensate fairly with recognition of work done.
  • Who is hungry for opportunity?
  •  If someone is money driven it is probably a red flag.
  • Hire leaders/drivers.
  • How do you measure or know if someone should be on your team?  Observe, where they have been? Their past performance can give you insight.
  • Marine Core Manual – Attract Leadership pg. 49 in Leadership Manual
  • Looking for people vs. having an immediate need/opening
  • How do they respond in the battle of life?
  • LMC – Learn/Master/Change
  • Two roads we allow a person to choose…Lead People or Master Technology.
  • Culture is very important.
  • Right thing for tight reasons vs. always doing it “that way.”  Embrace change
  • Balance.  Example:  A pilot needs to use both his instruments and what he can see.

Take away:

  • Watch for potential in the silent ones.
  • What is the impact?
  • Look for people who want to do something vs. someone who wants something to do.
  • Attitude is key
  • Reminder of the importance of culture, vision and attitude.
  • Fly visually and with instruments
  • LMC – Learn/Master/Change
  • Hire leaders – watch how others relate to them.
  • Stay close, watch. Everyone goes through skirmishes –watch how they come out of it.
  • Leaders keeping up with change.  Balance. Not more chiefs than Indians
  • People investing in themselves after they have the job.
  • Hire leaders

Kalamazoo, Thursday, September 11, 2014


  • How do you identify leaders?  You can develop wrong leaders.
  • Look for the diamond in the rough, those people that can be developed.
  • Intentionally being cognizant when looking for leaders.
  • Don’t try too hard.  Go with your gut reaction.
  • Damage control and not too much leash. Let them crawl before they walk.
  • Thumb on the pulse
  • There are Leaders of People and Leaders of Technical/Processes.  Can both manage people?
  • People who want to grow in the company take extra steps.
  • Leaders keeping up with the growth of the company.
  • We shouldn’t develop a clone to have a dynamic leader.
  • Learn how to dance with your team and customers  Saying “Yes” instead of  “No” to their ideas when you can.
  • You need both a Vision and Execution.
  • Biggest challenge as it pertains to Leadership?
  • Growth of industry with ups and downs.
  • You want someone to stay but you can’t over promise their career path.
  • Hiring Leaders
  • How much development, investment do you put in?  Do they have the chemistry?
  • What battery of testing is out there for perspective leaders?
  • Are leaders born or are they made?
  • If you’re riding a dead horse, get off.
  • To raise Dynamic Leaders, you have to have a Dynamic Organization.


    • Internal understanding that you can’t say one thing and do another.
    • Be a good role model. Have great value, integrity, honesty, sincerity, and morals.
    • People are going to follow what they see.
    • Be the same person you are at home, church and at work.
    • Let your expectations be known.
    • Getting Dynamic leaders goes back to the “Jeep” illustration.  Get in front of the jeep and lead.

Take a way:

    • Leadership role model: Running in front the of the Jeep
    • Dynamic Leadership requires a Dynamic Culture.
    • Culture will attract people.
    • Having passion, defining the role, step back and let them fly.
    • Fly by instrument and fly visually.  Both make the balance.
    • Hire Leaders

Kalamazoo, Friday, September 12, 2014


  • People are typically poor at understanding what we’re good at, part of leadership development is helping our people discover their talents.
  • Not all readers are leaders, but all leaders are readers. Reading is key in leadership development.
  • First order of healthcare is selfcare, enlighten yourself to the reality, celebrate the strengths.
  • People that invest in themselves are the ones that rise to the top.
  • Development of young leaders is important.
  • Not everyone can be great, but everyone is a leader in their own right. Every position is important.
  • Challenge of small business, don’t have the resources to compete for the best talent.
  • It doesn’t matter who you are, you have a positive or negative effect on others around you. We all have some level of impact.
  • Book recommended: 360 Leader.
  • You cannot serve anyone that you believe you are better than.
  • IMPACT = integrity, maintain, people, action, commitment, teamwork.
  • Being dynamic is cool, but if you don’t have the impact, what is the value?
  • Authenticity – real leadership is authentic. Are you the same person at home as you are at work?
  • Self care – constantly need to be raised up and taught.
  • Dynamism, take the time to assess. You can’t be dynamic all the time. A good leader can sense when it’s time to let others be dynamic. The good leaders know how to pace themselves.
  • Enthusiasm always trumps knowledge.
  • A leaders job is to take the organization to the next level.
  • Enthusiasm is an indicator of passion, but enthusiasm in and of itself is not passion.
  • What kind of personalities are great leaders?
  • Fascinating how impactful each one of us are on others.


  • Leadership is a thoughtful, purposeful process. It doesn’t just happen.
  • Sharpening the saw, self evaluation. Focused, targeted mentoring.
  • Aware of a full world of opportunity. Have to be aware of what’s going on around you & don’t miss the opportunity to learn. Need to be engaged and aware and willing to understand a lot of things are out of our control.
  • A great leader in one organization might not be great in another. The key is finding the right fit.
  • Serving others and listening. This is better than telling other people what to do.
  • Often we criticize when we should use mistakes as a teachable moment. A lot of leaders will just get rid of people rather than working to improve them.
  • Encourage hope in people. People want hope, it’s the common denominator among people.
  • As a servant leader, encourage through hope.


    • Do we take the time to develop our leadership? To make ourselves more effective?
    • Leadership is a long term commitment.
    • Cause & effect, many misunderstand this. A good leader helps others to understand the cause and effect of their behaviors.
    • Leaders have to be engaged and involved with their people.
    • Employees will bring their personal lives to work with them when they are having problems. Typically in Faith, Family and Finances. If there are problems here, you know they won’t be as effective at work. Need to be able to work through these tough phases of life with your people.
    • Preparation. Leaders have to prepare for the good & the bad.
    • Do what you say, not say what you do. Model the behavior you want to see in your employees.

Grand Rapids, Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Your Challenge:

      • Starts with myself
      • Overcoming personality conflicts
      • Lack of Trust – lose trust in buckets, gain it back in drips
      • Lack of buy-in / vision
      • Wrong people on the bus
      • Understand what you CAN change and understand what you CANNOT change
      • People need to work with you not for you

The Solution:

        • Hire slow / fire fast
        • Develop a culture based on trust – healthy conflict
        • Transparency in all that you do
        • Teammates need to feel part of something bigger
        • Understand teammates personality profiles and invest on going in the team (no one and done events)
        • Develop multiple ways to communicate (everyone is different) – understand what people want in terms of communication and information

The Take Away:

        • Build a culture of trust that allows people to develop their strengths and the grace to fail
        • Invest in the above… takes time, energy and purposeful intent

Grand Rapids, Thursday, September 11, 2014

Opening Group Definitions:

        • How do you know (how, when & if) you really are “Developing Great Leaders?”
        • You can’t Google it very effectively.
        • Great Leadership is both formal (I.E. inherent in the job title as in CEO), and informal (I.E. people want to follow somebody).
        • The attributes of a great leader with dynamic impact are: confident amidst change, positive, an effective teacher, masterful set of skills, dedicated to the success of the organization, clear in purpose, results producing, collaborative in nature, genuine, honest, vulnerable, trustworthy, innovative and sensitive to the needs of others.

Our Challenges:

        • Putting the customers’ needs first when those needs go outside our core competencies or even outside our strategic plan.
        • Knowing what to say “No” to, and when to say it.
        • Knowing the right decisions to make in complex situations, and then making those decisions confidently, yet humbly.
        • Finding the right blend between extending grace and exercising judgment.
        • Allowing department leaders to have the authority to make decisions (and to make mistakes) within their areas of responsibility and accountability.

Our Solutions:

          • Remember that developing great leaders is a process that’s never really completed; it is ongoing.
          • We can say to “No” to an aspect of a situation without saying “No” to the whole situation.
          • We can say “No” temporarily.  We can say, “No, thank you.”
          • Be transparent by keeping things as simple and clear as possible; don’t over think stuff.
          • Jesus, Joseph, Moses, Paul, Luke, Barnabas and others provide us with Biblical examples of what servant leadership is. Study them, and follow their example.
          • We don’t have to have the perfect response, the perfect solution or the perfect plan. We are flawed, and that’s OK.

Our Takeaways:

            • The best leaders have been “through the gauntlet”, so embrace our struggles as opportunities. (No limit to Biblical examples of this truth)
            • Relish helping people to grow and thrive; never undervalue anybody. Find the good things to focus upon.
            • Be transparent, be creative, seek long term and short term win/win solutions.
            • Deny our own egos by letting go of the stuff that doesn’t matter to God.
            • Be orderly in all aspects of our lives, because God is a God of order.

Detroit, Thursday, September 11, 2014

Your Challenge:

              • In the current job market, it seems those in the 50+ bracket are having difficulty finding leadership positions if their prior job was eliminated. Companies are hiring younger talent and the leadership roles are going to the mid career employees rather than senior ones .
              • There may be plenty of candidates who can fill the job description, but getting the right fit for the company culture is the critical piece and it takes time.
              • Insecurities hold people back from leading at times.
              • We underplay that there is opposition (Satan) and either don’t recognize or proceed as though he is not at play in our lives daily.

The Solution:

              • Humility and suffering is often part of the process of getting a great result or dynamic impact.
              • We can only go so far on our own merits, but with God all things are possible.
              • Bring Christ into workplace and those we interact with personally and professionally.
              •  Our role is to plant seeds in others whether for leadership or for Christ and it’s the Spirit’s job, if the person is willing, to nurture and grow that person into a leader and/or Christ follower. We need to let go of the results and just plant seeds and encourage.  Be the example.

The Take Away:

              •  You can lead the horse to water, but you cannot make him drink, in business or spiritually.
              • Serving others is key to developing great leaders.
              • There is comfort in knowing God is the leader and that He is in charge of the big picture

Company to consider: Duncan Aviation Core Values

At Duncan Aviation we:

v  Deliver high quality products and services

v  Charge fair prices and provide efficient turn times

v  Lead through action and innovation

v  Focus on solutions rather than problems

v  Respect others and are accountable for our actions

v  Maintain a team approach and offer positive suggestions

v  Value honestly, integrity, loyalty, and trust

v  Support our communities, maintain our health, and respect the environment

v  Are proud to be the best at what we do