Name: Chris Gengan
Title: Lean Transformation Manager
Organisation: Sappi SA
Thank you to the 2,000 leaders who’ve generously done the 7 Questions on Leadership!
We’ve gone through the interviews and asked the best of the best to come back and answer 7 MORE Questions on Leadership.
I hope Chris's answers will encourage you in your leadership journey. Enjoy!
1. As a leader, how do you build trust with employees, customers and other stakeholders?
Empathetic listening, being conversational, demonstrate trustworthiness & always focusing engagement & interaction without imposing oneself
2. What do 'VISION' and 'MISSION' mean to you? And what does it actually look like to use them in real-world business?
Vision is my stretch to exceeding expectations to be successful in all spheres in my life. Mission is that step ladder of each step I climb towards this Vision of being a better person today than yesterday and even better tomorrow
3. How can a leader empower the people they're leading?
Collaboration, checking-in regularly, coaching to 'GROW" people and also creating opportunities for a 'stretch' in their lives to be agile and nimble.
4. Who are some of the coaches or mentors in your life who have had a positive influence on your leadership? Can you please tell a meaningful story about one of them?
Always connecting the dots to what we do daily, weekly, monthly to the business vision as well as always 'catching people doing the right things'. At the same time having frank conversations on areas that I need to up my game
5. Leadership is often more about what you DON'T do. How do you maintain focus in your role?
Reading through various media particularly leadership books and reflect on my deliberate actions
6. If you fail to plan, you plan to fail. Everyone plans differently. How do you plan for the week, month and years ahead in your role?
My planning starts on the Friday the week before using the "First things First" philosophy of Covey's Habit 3
7. What advice would you give to a young leader who is struggling to delegate effectively?
Use the platform as opportunity for continuous improvement but most importantly ask and do not impose. The Jo-Hari window is a tool that comes to mind to share 'blind spots'. Also suggest other leaders to either coach or mentor this young leader