|CONDOCENTRIC: Leadership In The Condominium Universe|
As in any organization with multiple stakeholders, getting things done in a condominium complex can be a daunting task. Multiple players with multiple agendas, positions and perceptions often serve to grind forward progress to a halt, and this can prove extremely frustrating for a Property Manager or Board member who is trying to accomplish positive outcomes.
Leadership is about motivating others to want to struggle for shared aspirations. The operative word is want, and when intelligent people want to accomplish something, it is usually driven by both what they’re thinking and what they’re feeling. So the leader’s first task is to appeal to their logical minds and then arouse positive emotions by reconnecting them with the purpose of the organization (why we come here to do this work). When both heart and head are engaged, people are more open to new ideas and collaborations.
Focus on Shared Vision
To move forward requires leading people to common ground. If the organization has a clear vision, the leader needs to remind everyone of that vision in powerful ways; to reconnect them (here is where head and heart come in) to their shared purpose. If there is no vision, the leader needs to work with the group to create one, because shared vision leads to co-operation and commitment.
“Leadership is a dialogue; it’s about developing a shared sense of identity. It’s about enrolling others so that they can see how their own interests and aspirations are aligned with the vision and can thereby become mobilized to commit their individual energies to its realization. A vision is inclusive of the constituents’ aspirations; it’s an ideal and unique image of the future for the common good.” 1
Call to Action
You can then challenge your Board to come to agreement on next steps required to achieve the vision, and commit to action. The key is to phrase your request in terms of their contribution to the overall vision.
The hustle and bustle of everyone’s daily life tends to get us bogged down in our own issues. Often our myopia leaves us overly focused on our own agendas, and it’s no different for people on condominium Boards. We forget the original reason why we’re sitting on the Board.
1. The Leadership Challenge, Kouzes, Jim and Posner, Barry 1995 p.124
Michael Darmody, is Principal of Darmody & Company, and helps small and medium sized businesses to bridge the performance gap between where they are now, and where they need to be. He lives in Mississauga and can be reached at email@example.com or (905) 614-1935.