In this week’s edition of Best Practices, our fearless leader, NMCFS President Jeff Jensen joins us to discuss what attributes make a successful leader — not only with NMC Field Services, but for all career paths and walks of life.

According the Jeff, many people get the notion that a leader’s primary function is that of a motivator to others.  But that isn’t so.  While motivation is important, motivation really starts at the individual level “from the inside.”  Activity really precedes motivation.  With this understanding, whether if you are a personal producer or a leader, the primary motivational factor must come from within.

Now, one primary difference for leaders is that they are great communicators.  While they may be motivated and are at times motivating, their best contribution to others is by being in constant contact with their team.  Jeff emphasizes the importance of actually picking up your phone, dialing a number, and talking to people, opposed from texting or emailing. “Don’t wait until the end of the week. Don’t wait all week long and hope that they’re doing something.  Pick up the phone and call them.”  First off, this shows the person that you’re thinking about them.  Secondly, it gets them in the mindset of going to work.  This could be anything from keeping them focused on their goals or just giving them that gentle nudge to step out of the door in the morning.  And he suggests that many successful leaders also pick up the phone at the end of the work day and call their Reps to see how their day went as well.

Jeff also briefly talks about what a work week may look like for a successful leader.  He references this sample schedule from the Pathway to Leadership guide.

Jeff finishes by pointing out that it does not take motivation and talent in order to be successful in this business — although they do help.  It actually takes discipline.  “If you can talk, you have the talent.  And activity creates motivation.  But if you can get out, and walk and talk, in the long run that will always beat out a talented person,” he explained.  “It is not the mountain we are trying to conquer, it is ourselves.  If we can not only lead that horse to water, but understand the horse well enough to get it to think its thirsty, it will drink.”

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