How to Identify an Inefficient Leader?

How to Identify an Inefficient Leader?

Leadership failure and leadership effectiveness are two important and contrasting concepts in management, while leadership failure and the related aspects of leadership incompetence have not yet been addressed on a detailed level.

Competent leaders have high levels of trust, ensure engagement, and achieve productivity. Whereas incompetent ones penalize workers who are less productive and spread toxicity all over the organization. Consider that the economic impact of having a toxic worker is two times higher than that of hiring a star performer.

Inefficient leaders are the main reason for low levels of employee engagement, and high attrition levels, passive job seeking, and self-employment migration.

Some people may wonder about the meaning of incompetence, especially in connection to leadership. Whatever way you look at it, the essence of incompetent leadership is easy to define; it is an outcome of the pent-up insecurities a leader has on their subordinates’ growth.

In an ideal world, examining candidates for leadership roles — in both politics and the business realms — would be an effort to detect the potential signs of incompetence. This is applicable for both the genders, but for some reason we seem less preoccupied with combating incompetence in men than in women. In most cases, they are overrepresented in leadership roles. On the other hand, from a fairness standpoint, hiring managers majorly make it easier for incompetent female team member(s) to become leaders. Further, a best way to create a positive culture could be ensured by putting an end to people’s unethical pursuits to getting promoted to the top.

Those responsible for judging leadership candidates should improve their ability to distinguish between confidence and competence. At times, many competent are perceived as incompetent, as they fail to display the attributes that make leaders more effective.

Now, science has found a way to combat this problem. The following questions are characteristic of science-based assessments that help evaluating leadership potential in individuals, with an intent to avoid recruiting based on the human inclination to equate overconfidence and arrogance to talent.

  1. Do you have an exceptional talent for leadership?
  2. Do you rarely make mistakes at work?
  3. Are you able to achieve anything you want, just by putting your mind to it?
  4. Are you destined to be successful?
  5. Is it easier for you to fool people, than for people to fool you?

Those assessment questions can reliably measure arrogance and overconfidence. People who love themselves are often unduly proud of their egos and behave more self-assured unmindful of their misunderstandings than one may think.

Perhaps it is time to stop paying lip service to humility and integrity, until we practice what we preach and pick leaders on the basis of leadership potential. Instead of promoting people on the basis of their charisma, overconfidence, and narcissism, we must put people in charge who possess and exhibit actual competence, humility, and integrity.

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