According to FedEx, its best leaders share nine personal attributes - which the company defines with remarkable specificity. FedEx also has a system for rating aspiring leaders on whether they possess these attributes. How do you rate? Judge yourself against these edited descriptions of the nine faces of leadership at FedEx.
Instills faith, respect, and trust. Has a special gift of seeing what others need to consider. Conveys a strong sense of mission.
Coaches, advises, and teaches people who need it. Actively listens and gives indications of listening. Gives newcomers a lot of help.
Gets others to use reasoning and evidence, rather than unsupported opinion. Enables others to think about old problems in new ways. Communicates in a way that forces others to rethink ideas that they had never questioned before.
Willing to stand up for ideas even if they are unpopular. Does not give in to pressure or to others' opinions in order to avoid confrontation. Will do what's right for the company and for employees even if it causes personal hardship.
Follows through and keeps commitments. Takes responsibility for actions and accepts responsibility for mistakes. Works well independently of the boss.
Functions effectively in changing environments. When a lot of issues hit at once, handles more than one problem at a time. Changes course when the situation warrants it.
Does what is morally and ethically right. Does not abuse management privileges. Is a consistent role model.
Reaches sound and objective evaluations of alternative courses of action through logic, analysis, and comparison. Puts facts together rationally and realistically. Uses past experience and information to bring perspective to present decisions.
Respect for others
Honors and does not belittle the opinions or work of other people, regardless of their status or position.
A version of this article appeared in the February/March 1998 issue of Fast Company magazine.