Alison Overholt's mention of our co-workers' first impressions of us reminds me....one of the interesting threads we've seen in our coaching work is that many executives tend to over look their peer relationships and concentrate more on their relationships with their boss and their direct reports.
A leader's effectiveness with those three groups - direct reports, peers, and the boss - can be distinctly different. For example, a 360-degree report may reveal that a leader's boss and direct reports think he's a fantastic listener and problem solver, while his peers perceive just the opposite.
So often, we think of leadership as a vertical relationship. You manage up or down. Yet leaders who invest in building strong relations across the conference table will be more likely to experience collaboration and get better results.