Leaders come, leaders go. Some come to stay and go nowhere. Some live in our minds and hearts generationally. Others spit venoms that break bones perpetually. Some leave behind wide and clear lenses for a whole community to see through. Some create collective compelling visions for everyone to see through to walk towards the finishing line with a clear picture in mind. Others destroy the structures laid down by their forerunners and may never contribute to building anything. The plus one goes beyond performance. It's about sacrifice, commitment, doing more and consistently going beyond great, stretching expectations.
I've worked under a leader with a plus one factor and I called him the plus one leader. I really relished the grooming. Honestly, I wouldn't trade that experience for anything. I was stretched (chortling as I write). Oh yes, I was. If you work under a plus one leader and you are ready to build a plus one attitude to stand out with a plus one factor, you'll always be ahead of competition or better still, you'll be ahead of yourself. You can only develop the plus one factor in the corporate world when you exceed management's expectation, contribute to other team's deliverables, commit to rise above self, peers, challenges and always learning to be ahead of workplace challenges. Remember, you are your own benchmark! There should also be the internal passion to keep doing better above expectation.
In 21st century leadership, leaders have no option than to rise above challenges and be willing to set straight unbending bars. To have a plus one factor, you go beyond given targets and expectations. !ere is always a silent request to stand up for yourself and for the team's targets. If you work under plus one leaders, you'll be conscious of the plus one factor because a plus one leader creates plus one followers. A plus one leader doesn't just promote employees. !ey keep on asking key questions like, is Jane exceeding specific deliverables? And what extra factor has Jane got over Kofi? If the answers are not clear enough, Jane wouldn't be promoted and elevated over Kofi.
In leadership, there is always a big difference between meeting and exceeding deliverables. So I led a session in Accra Ghana and a participant genuinely wanted to know why she's not been promoted after working in a firm for years and to her endless surprise, junior colleagues she inducted were climbing up the ladder and getting all the promotions, elevations, accolades and recognitions. My answer was simple. You need the plus one! So I asked; beyond your job description and performance (which I failed to query), what else are you bringing to the table? I mentioned to her that although I don't know the kind of leader she works with, the 21st century workplace is currently churning out new breed of plus one leaders who always demand more than performance contracts.
To bring this point to the table, I actually painted a stimulating picture that plus one leaders always want dessert on the side when they actually pay for the main course. A plus one leader looks out for the plus one factor to justify any promotion or elevation at the workplace. Employees who develop the plus one factor always have an edge over those who don't. As Welch (2005) hinted that you are hired to perform, Ahenkorah (2018) asserts that in leadership development you only put your best foot forward when you look after yourself and look after others. Plus one factor doesn't mean relegate your core function to develop other skills in other departments. The plus one factor requires you to perform significantly to exceed on core deliverables and to subsequently contribute to other functions in other departments. When you develop your plus one factor, you'll always stay even when you are gone. If you want to see yourself rising in leadership, you have to do more than more. This is Leadership!
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