Dale Legband

“successes continue in my life and work because of three practices I learned.
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“First, I’m much better at owning the results I create in teams-both good and bad. When I take that kind of responsibility, then I correct and improve faster, as do others around me… I catch myself blaming or making excuses and instead ask myself what I need to do to own it and effectively move on. It has changed how I manage because I hear the difference and am able to reward the people who are truly taking responsibility . I spend less time worrying about people who are good at making excuses. I just stop investing in folks who aren’t taking responsibility. And, I invest in people who do. Your model of personal responsibility has had a tremendous work impact because I seared it into my brain and recognize the difference in myself and others. I even use the information with my kids.

Second, I no longer view a team in terms of one leader and a bunch of followers. That’s a hierarchical view. In fact, you teach leadership through membership and membership through leadership. I remember when someone in class actually said “We’ve been here for two-and-a-half days learning about team membership, when are you going to talk about team leadership?” That’s when I realized powerful teams are composed of many leaders. Each and every individual is called upon to lead at different times and for different reasons. And, as a manager, if I reserve all leadership opportunities for myself, then I will end up with only followers – grudging followers – and we won’t be a powerful team. This has made my teams in the last five years much stronger.

Third, I’m much more in touch with people in their job than I ever was before. I put little thought into  what someone got personally from coming to work. It didn’t much matter to me. But it has stuck with me ever since. I learned how to sit down and ask people what they wanted to get out of the project – with everybody, not just the team lead!  I know what makes them excited to get up in the morning and come to work. My relationships have been much better since that. Managing relationships effectively and productively is critical to the  workplace. You may not be able to quantify it, but you know it’s expensive to productivity when relationships are broken. You don’t get those types of things in management classes.

In five years these powerful teams have delivered almost every project run on-time and on-budget and employee retention has been excellent.”


Dale Legband,
Director, R&D, KLA-Tencor
Posted in on 01/21/2011 12:20 am
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