How to find clarity as a leader

Vagueness is a productivity killer.

by Ann Latham

Every leader knows clarity is important, but usually only in a general sort of way. There is no urgency to pursue greater clarity because we don’t really know how unclear things are or how much difference greater clarity could make in how our organisations perform. 

Clarity is the next performance frontier and it represents an enormous opportunity hidden in plain sight. In one study by a Fortune 50 company, it was determined that employees are really productive only about 20% of each day. That means there are only a couple of hours a day when employees can cruise with confidence because they know exactly what they are trying to accomplish, how they will proceed, with whom, and with the luxury of focus. The rest of their day is consumed by unproductive meetings, dragged-out decisions, vague requests, general confusion, shifting priorities, endless email chains, mistakes, conflict, and more.

So what’s a leader to do? 

Your first concerns likely gravitate toward the clarity of your vision, strategy or goals. This, actually, may be where you are clearest, but to assess your level of clarity, you need to consider questions such as:

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