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The 7 Perspectives of Effective Leaders

Compiled by Chuck Olson

Title: The 7 Perspectives of Effective Leaders: A Proven Framework for Improving Decisions And Increasing Your Influence

Author: Daniel Harkavy

Copyright Date: 2020

In his book, The 7 Perspectives of Effective Leaders; A Proven Framework for Improving Decisions and Increasing Your Influence, executive coach Daniel Harkavy presents and discusses an insightful list of vantage points that ensures leadership success. Tucked into the pages, you will find leadership nuggets like this: …leadership today isn’t about certainty. With all the complexity and variables in play, it’s hard to be certain about anything. Given the speed and pace with which things change, confidence is a much better target than certainty. If you wait until you are 100 percent certain of a decision or action, then you probably waited too long.”

Take a look at these Book Notes to get an overview of how to think and act more strategically about your leadership.


Signature Chuck


Book Description:

According to CEO and executive coach Daniel Harkavy, effective leadership boils down to just two things: your decisions and influence. Good decisions lead to strong results, which in turn increase your influence. If you get these two things right, your leadership effectiveness improves.

But as all leaders know, it’s not that easy, especially in today’s fast-paced, complex, and connected environment. To make the best decisions and have maximum impact, you need to see your business from seven perspectives:

• current reality
• long-term vision
• strategic bets
• the team
• the customer
• your role
• the outsider

Drawing upon his 25 years of experience as a successful CEO and executive coach,
and including conversations and thinking from more than 20 well-known business and organizational leaders, Daniel Harkavy unpacks a proven framework you can implement for immediate results in your organization’s culture and performance. If you’re looking to improve your leadership, this book will give you a straightforward framework to do so.


Book Quotes:

At the end of the Cold War, General Maxwell P. Thurman of the US Army War College described the state of the world as VUCA: Volatile, Uncertain, Complex, and Ambiguous. With the speed of technological changes, globalization, the political and economic forces at work today, and the real-time information-sharing platforms that most humans access, the same term has been used to describe the business environment over the past several years. And now as I complete my final page review of this manuscript ninety days into our COVID-19 global pandemic, I have to say we are leading in VUCA times on steroids. LOCATION: 164

Your leadership effectiveness will be determined by the decisions you make and the influence you have. LOCATION: 221

Here is a preview of the 7 Perspectives. This is the road map we’ll be following on this journey toward more effective leadership:

  • Perspective One: Current Reality
  • Perspective Two: Vision
  • Perspective Three: Strategic Bets
  • Perspective Four: The Team
  • Perspective Five: The Customer
  • Perspective Six: Your Role
  • Perspective Seven: The Outsider  LOCATION: 251-265

But then again, leadership today isn’t about certainty. With all the complexity and variables in play, it’s hard to be certain about anything. Given the speed and pace with which things change, confidence is a much better target than certainty. If you wait until you are 100 percent certain of a decision or action, then you probably waited too long. LOCATION: 270

The 7 Perspectives framework isn’t about giving you 100 percent certainty in every decision or interaction you will have but about gaining confidence that your process will enable you to see your business from every perspective necessary to help you succeed. It’s about having a firm confidence that you are focusing on the right things that will drive your business forward. It’s about eliminating the distractions that drain your energy. It’s about having confidence that you are getting the right information from the right people at the right time to make better decisions, grow your influence, and improve your effectiveness.  LOCATION: 278

One of our core leadership beliefs at Building Champions is that self-leadership always precedes team leadership.  LOCATION: 294

Curiosity plays a crucial role in good leadership. Exceptional leaders go beyond merely asking questions to developing what I refer to as “intentional curiosity.”  LOCATION: 314

Rather than focusing on doing or knowing, excellent leaders put an emphasis on questioning and understanding. Armed with intentional curiosity, they see leadership differently, always seeking to ask the right questions to get the right information, thereby more deeply engaging those around them.  LOCATION: 317

How can leaders even ask the right questions if they don’t act from a place of true humility? Humility prepares them to hear answers that they don’t really want to hear. Great leaders, however, ask the tough questions anyway. They’d rather feel uncomfortable now than fail later.  LOCATION: 324

Think of the 7 Perspectives as your GPS system for leadership. Putting into practice each of the perspectives will give you the knowledge you require to ascertain your current location, where you want to end up, and how to navigate the road ahead. LOCATION: 371

To succeed, effective leaders accept that they must remain curious, stay open, and act with humility.  LOCATION: 378

Current Reality refers to understanding the business as it is today. The most effective leaders keep their finger on the pulse of the business. They know what to look at, when to look at it, what it’s telling them, and more importantly, what questions to ask. LOCATION: 401

The real challenge comes when the business moves along well. In those times, many leaders start to shy away from reviewing the key metrics of the business and become a little lax with this first perspective. The best of the best, however, remember that regardless of the state or season of the business, they have to grasp the cadence and rhythm of the organization’s current reality.  LOCATION: 434

Companies with dynamic cultures full of engaged employees tend to have a leader who sees something much bigger than just a product or service.  LOCATION: 591

First, the vision is in writing. An unwritten vision is like using a GPS without specifying a destination.  LOCATION: 598

But Vision is visceral as well as cerebral. It’s about who you are as much as what you do. Great visions come alive not only in the minds but in the hearts of great leaders. Those visions compel leaders to go to extraordinary lengths—to go through discomfort, risk, and self-sacrifice—to create something concrete from an invisible idea.  LOCATION: 600

If you want to develop, communicate, and maximize an effective vision, then make certain your vision passes the Two-C test: Clear and Compelling.  LOCATION: 631

A clear vision allows you to build strategies and plans that will take you from Current Reality to your desired future state.  LOCATION: 634

A compelling vision causes leaders to build an extraordinary organization. Such a leader sees and believes something remarkable about what could be in the future.  LOCATION: 636

In order to best engage the heads and the hearts of anyone they lead, all leaders must answer three crucial questions: What do we Belong to? Who are we going to Become? What are we going to Build?  LOCATION: 644

1. What Do We Belong To?

The key question here is, Can you clearly identify and articulate the culture, character, and work ethic that you desire in your organization? LOCATION: 654

Convictions are the uncompromising values and beliefs for which you are willing to fight.  LOCATION: 656

Convictions must define what you stand for; remain in place even if they become a competitive disadvantage; be pursued with relentless honesty; embody what you truly believe, not what you think you should believe; authentically and visibly reflect your life; stay consistent regardless of market life cycles, technological breakthroughs, and management fads; be lived out by both you and your team.  LOCATION: 659

Behaviors are the observable actions that demonstrate a leader’s lived-out convictions. LOCATION: 662

Behaviors must set the standard for your actions, clearly demonstrate what’s expected, clearly define what you expect from others and what they can expect from you, set the foundation for your culture. LOCATION: 665

Purpose is the fundamental reason for your existence as a business, the motivational force that drives you.  LOCATION: 667

Purpose must define the reason for your corporate existence, reflect your motivation for doing your work, capture the soul of your convictions, provide the answer to the question “Why do you do what you do?”, always be more meaningful than merely making a profit.  LOCATION: 668

2. Who Are We Going to Become?

Most of your team members invest the majority of their waking hours in your organization. If you want them to spend each hour purposefully, they must be able to answer the question “Who are we becoming, professionally and personally, by investing our valuable time in this organization?”  LOCATION: 671

Effective leadership means effective storytelling. The best leaders often tell a compelling story of the future. The more effective you become at telling your story of the years ahead, the easier you will find it to lead the heads and hearts of those you lead.  LOCATION: 686

3. What Are We Going to Build?

You cannot answer the question “What should we build?” without first clearly seeing your compelling ambitions, those huge goals that feel so compelling and look so far out that accomplishing them will require your team to stretch and work harder and smarter than ever before.  LOCATION: 688

Compelling ambitions must commit to a daunting challenge, not merely to a reasonable goal; sound clear and compelling; unify focal points of effort; become a catalyst for team spirit; furnish a clear finish line, so your team can know when it has achieved the goa; be tangible, concrete, and highly focused.  LOCATION: 692


Note: should you wish to find any quote in its original context, the Kindle “location” is provided after each entry.

Chuck Olson

As founder and president of Lead With Your Life, Dr. Chuck Olson is passionate about inspiring, resourcing and equipping Kingdom leaders to lead from the inside out.  To lead, not with the external shell of positions, achievements or titles, but from an internal commitment to a deep, abiding and transparent relationship with Jesus. Serving as a pastor and leadership coach for over forty years, Chuck has a track record of building these truths deep into the lives of both ministry and marketplace leaders.

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