Lead your Team like Genghis Khan: an 11-step guide
- To lead like Genghis Khan, you should first assess what you have around you: Who are your most loyal, hardworking supporters? Surround yourself closely with them. They will be your base of strength. Genghis Khan first surrounded himself with those loyal to his father and his blood relatives who became bodyguards. Who is most passionate about supporting your goals? You can trust them.
- Next, understand your most valuable skills: not martial skills and cavalry like Khan, but your abilities to deliver devastating blows in customer service and reliability. These skills are free but often underused. Use them to your advantage.
- Look at your team. Are you expanding? You need to form a web of connections so you’re up to date with progress and performance. Use your most trusted advisors to monitor and maintain the newest branches of your team.
- Before long you will start to see victories at a local level. Cherish these. Although initial victories may seem small, they are the building blocks for you to maintain support and loyalty within your team. Who has helped to achieve these victories? What have you done right? What have you learned? These are all questions you should ask, but first celebrate your victories like Genghis Khan – reward those who helped you achieve them – show them that their work is appreciated.
- Do not boil your enemies as Genghis Khan did: Look at your competitors, not as enemies, but as people you can learn from. Use them to expand your network. Study them – what are they doing to achieve success? Can you apply this to your own team?
- Okay, so you’re seeing victories and you’ve celebrated to raise team morale: Well done. Now is the time to expand. Go back to your earlier questions:
- Who helped you to achieve the early victories? Keep them close, reward them if you can – these people will be your generals.
- What have you done right and what have you learned? These questions prompted the rapid advancement of the Mongol army and will help you the most in expanding.
- What have you done right? For Khan, this was his early weapons – the loyalty of his people and his traditional martial techniques.
- How can you improve? This is where you must adopt a mindset of creativity – Khan wasn’t stagnant, he adapted to new technologies like gunpowder, missiles and siege weapons, new communications systems, and law codes. You should do this too.
- Establish clear and efficient communications, improve your weaponry, sales devices, delivery speeds, product quality. These will help improve customer satisfaction and eventually lead to greater victories.
- This step is important: Stay close to your roots: You understand that ‘Genghis Khan’ means ‘universal ruler,’ but you are not that, you are a member of the team as much as anyone else. Khan understood this, and so he lived in the same humble wool tents as his people. Don’t lose sight of your team – you’re not above them and if you elevate yourself to the status of ‘universal ruler’ then you’ll lose their loyalty – your most valuable weapon.
- Now, with the loyalty of your close-knit and well-connected team, you can start to conquer the business world… Make sure you have a clear goal – perhaps not the same as Genghis Khan, who thought that the sky god Tengri wanted him to rule the world – but something that your team can understand and get behind. Now you have a goal, start setting incentives, bonuses for exemplary work, friendly competition to increase efficiency and comradery. Share the spoils of war with your team.
- You’re beginning to achieve greater and greater victories: So, you’re expanding even more. Your team is growing. Genghis Khan surrounded captured enemies that he brought into the Mongol force with his own trusted people to ensure newcomer loyalty. New team members aren’t enemies, but you should surround them with your more trusted core to achieve similar results – you’re building a strong web.
- Appreciate people’s skills: Some are sales artisans, performance scholars, product engineers, keyboard warriors. Make sure you know people’s strengths and assign people roles where they can use their skills to the fullest. This will create a more enjoyable work environment and increase productivity.
- So, now you’re here, at step 11: You’ve established a strong core team, clear communications systems, rewarded employees, innovated products, and services, expanded the team, set goals, remained humble and now you’re about to conquer China, Persia, and Russia.
Well… maybe not that, but you’re in the business big leagues.
Don’t be intimidated by the other armies around. Some might be bigger, have newer weapons or a more advantageous position.
But you’ve got the strongest team, so numbers don’t matter.
Genghis Khan and the Mongols won with their loyal team of 50,000 against armies who were almost 500,000 strong.
This is because of the steps he took to ensure loyalty within the team.
You have done the same. All that’s left to do … is conquer the business world.
Darren Turner’s imaging business success story began in 2003 when he opened a retail store in the UK selling printer supplies to home users & small organisations. Since then he has moved into a business unit, grown his team and continued to adapt to match his customers’ changing needs. He has developed a ‘fit for purpose’ office products and solutions business model that provides certainty of cost and service for small business, charities and schools—thus providing them complete peace of mind.
He has become a trusted advisor for small organisations across the world. Turner invites you to chat with him about your business, reaching out to him on LinkedIn, email or on the phone at +44-7887-548523. Especially on this topic: “Lead your Team like Genghis Khan: an 11-step guide.”
Read his other posts and blogs:
- Lead your Team like Genghis Khan: an 11-step guide
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- The Matteo Ricci Strategy to Find Middle Ground
- Giving the Shirt Off Your Back for Quality Price and Ethics
- Good Business Needs Good Writers Too
- Butterflies Bumblebees and Shapeless Boxing
- The Martial Art of Fighting for your Business
- Walking the Plank with Pirates
- Resilience is Knowing When Not to Quit
- My View on the Future of the Print Technology Industry
- Planes Trains and Automobiles (and bicycles)
- Why Procrastinate Today When You Can Put it off Until Tomorrow
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