About Gordon Tredgold
I’m delighted to share my latest Q & A which is with the highly successful Gordon Tredgold, CEO of Leadership Principles LLC. Gordon speaks, writes, coaches and consults on leadership. Gordon also writes for Inc Magazine, Huffington Post, Addicted2Success and Business Insider. Gordon works with corporate teams, small business and as an advisor to CEOs on how to improve operational performance through improved leadership. He also does 1-2-1 coaching with individuals looking to achieve personal or professional goals.
When we can create belief in our teams they become highly energised and inspired, and I love to see teams achieve things they didn’t believe were possible.
When I was younger I used to get a thrill from proving people wrong, when they told me I couldn’t do something, and then I would do it.
Now I get the thrill from seeing teams achieve great results, surprising themselves what they are capable of.
When I took over the department on-time delivery was at 35%, we were experiencing 50 major outages per month, and the goal of the project was to save $20m from the operational budget, and to try and maintain the same quality levels. I set the goal at saving $50m and to significantly improve our operational performance levels. The cost savings were to be made by consolidating services with our strategic suppliers and to offshore the work where possible to India. The team did an amazing job, the exceeded the cost saving target , saving closer to $55m and increased on-time delivery to 95%, and managed to reduce outages to an average of 5 per month. The bold goal inspired the team and the plan we created gave them the belief that they would be successful. It was a tough 3-year project, but in the end, we exceeded the goals.
The biggest inspiration in my life is my wife Carine. I’d had success in management before I met her, I had a strong track record of delivery, but I would say my reputation was more of a pit bull than as a leader. I would lead from the front taking on the difficult jobs, leading by example and getting people to follow me through my drive, energy and will to win.
Real leadership takes courage, we need be prepared to be vulnerable, to build trusts, to connect with our teams and to lead from the heart.
When I met Carine she really opened up this area in my character, it was always there, but she gave me the confidence to follow that path 100%. Her love gave me the strength and belief in my own ability and she encouraged me to take a more people-focused approach, making it more about them than about me.
As I said I’d had a lot of success before, but taking this heart-based people the first approach to leadership had a significant impact on results, it got more of the team engaged.
My favourite leadership book well I have two I always recommend. Gung Ho by Ken Blanchard, it’s an easy read which gives you three simple steps to create a highly engaged team. It’s an approach that I have used many times. The second book is Leadership and Self-Deception by Abridger Press, which is a horrible book, because when you’ve read it, it leaves you in no doubt that when things go wrong how much you are to blame, and how we try to pass blame to others. When we do that it disempowers us, whereas when to accept it might be our fault it empowers us to start to fix things.
What is the most important piece of business advice you can give our readers?
My last book was called FAST – 4 Principles Every Business Needs To Achieve Success and to Drive Results and my one piece of advice would try and be FAST.
Make sure you have the right Focus, that you know what success looks like and has been clearly communicated.
Be Accountable, leadership defines culture and if you want your teams and even your children to be accountable remember it all starts with you.
Look to keep things Simple, because complexity is the enemy of execution.
Lastly, make sure you have Transparency into what needs to be done and how well you are actually performing. We need to know our position at every step of the way, and if we are off track then we need to review our approach, and if we are on track then continue as planned.
FAST becomes a habit which will help you achieve more success.
Thank you Gordon!
You can find out more about Gordon by visiting his website here.