I am a firm believer in leadership. With strong leadership, everything moves forward. Leaders are advancers. They advance and push the thinking of their teammates right out of the box–smashing the status quo and advancing creativity. Leaders elevate others’ performances–making those they work with (and for) better than anyone every thought possible. Leaders improve the confidence of individuals and organizations.
Managers, personal power leaders, or pseudo-leaders might be able to maintain a team at it’s current level, although I would argue if the best a leader can hope for is status quo they are on a slow descent into the terrain (i.e. crash). True leaders, GREATER GOOD leaders, are able to lift their organizations to a higher level and enable creativity, innovation, and thinking that advances the entire unit.
The key is to keep those you lead at the forefront of everything the leader does.
A couple of thoughts:
There is always enough credit to go around. Transfer ownership of projects to those that are actually doing the work.
Everybody wants to contribute–some can just contribute more. Create an environment where team members want to be responsible. This means passing credit and praise to the lowest level while the leader accepts blame for failure–followed with mentoring in private with project owners.
Identify, coach, and develop the unique capabilities of personnel.
A true leader must learn quickly and encourage others to learn, advance, and develop as quickly and efficiently as possible.
IF you want your team to advance, provide it with leadership. Leadership will CHANGE the world.