Does your company’s leadership exhibit moxie through their work ethics and values? John Baldoni is an internationally recognized executive coach, author, and thought leader. He is the author of Moxie: The Secret to Bold and Gutsy Leadership. John recently sat down with AMA to discuss leading with MOXIE and why more leaders need it.
AMA: Your book is based on the idea of MOXIE. Is that just about individual leadership, or is there anything cultural going on here?
JB: The first four letters, Mindfulness, Opportunity, Character (X for the character factor), and Innovation are more internally directed. However, the E is the Engagement. Engagement brings people together for common purpose. Why are we here, what is it we want to do?
Engagement really means, do people want to come to work, and do they feel like they’re making a contribution? It’s as simple as that: Easy to state, but hard to achieve in the workplace. And that takes an awful lot of work, attention to detail, something that leaders must do on a daily basis.
I’d like to say leaders do three things: Be seen, meaning being visible. Be heard, stay on your message, but also listen and learn from what you hear. And most importantly, be there. That’s the metaphor. Whatever the organization needs you to do, you do it. Those elements foster this culture of engagement.
If you get an engaged culture, then you can do what it is you want to do. So if you think of it that way, there are companies which have this moxie spirit. It’s an entrepreneurial spirit, if you would. And there’s also this “small company against the odds” type of thing. But also large companies feel like that. I know, for example, Ford Motor Company and some of the travails it has experienced. Now they’re a company with moxie. They’ve been to the brink, and now they’re back again. We’re seeing that with Chrysler, examples like that. There are many other companies that have been tested, survived, and come back in even better shape.
John Baldoni, chair of leadership development at N2Growth, is an internationally recognized leadership educator, executive coach and speaks throughout North America, Europe and the Middle East. John is the author of more than a dozen books, including MOXIE: The Secret to Bold and Gutsy Leadership, Lead with Purpose, Lead Your Boss, and The Leader’s Pocket Guide. John’s books have been translated into 10 languages. In 2015 Trust Across America named him to its list of top 100 most trustworthy business experts for the second consecutive year. In 2014 Inc.com listed John as a Top 50 leadership expert and Top 100 leadership speaker. Also in 2014, Global Gurus ranked John No. 11 on its list of global leadership experts. John has authored more than 500 leadership columns for a variety of online publications including Forbes, Harvard Business Review and Bloomberg Businessweek. John’s leadership resource website is www.johnbaldoni.com