The whole point of leadership is figuring out where to go from where you are now. While you may know where you want to go, people won’t see that unless you actively communicate it with them. Remember, these traits aren’t just things you need to have, they are things you need to actively display to those around you.
When people do not consider their leader forward-looking, that leader is usually suffering from one of two possible problems:
- The leader doesn’t have a forward-looking vision.
- The leader is unwilling or scared to share the vision with others.
When a leader doesn’t have a vision for the future, it usually because they are spending so much time on today, that they haven’t really thought about tomorrow. On a very simplistic level this can be solved simply by setting aside some time for planning, strategizing and thinking about the future.
Many times when a leader has no time to think and plan for the future, it is because they are doing a poor job of leading in the present. They have created an organization and systems that rely too much on the leader for input at every stage.
Some leaders have a clear vision, but don’t wish to share it with others. Most of the time they are concerned that they will lose credibility if they share a vision of the future that doesn’t come about. This is a legitimate concern. However, people need to know that a leader has a strong vision for the future and a strong plan for going forward.
From Mark Shead's Five Most Important Leadership Traits