One of the most important attributes of leaders that I have witnessed first hand, is the, ability to "walk away...."
I had a boss in the past. He never would let a meeting end.
He would never fire a employee.....
A prospect would literally get up and leave a room, my boss would still be seated and talking - droning on and on about our product. The client was trying to escape. He did not GET IT.
He allowed, below average performance to run unabated, because, he "knew the person a long time..."
He had no clue (on a variety of different levels) - when to WALK AWAY.
The term has many different meanings, but I want to identify a few,(meanings) in the context I'm placing it.
* identifying talent, and knowing when to let it flee
* identifying talent, and knowing when to cut them loose, in spite of popular feelings (and whether or not they are valued PRODUCERS, but the company would be better served without them)
* leaving a deal, for reasons OTHER than numbers, profit, or personal gain
* making a tough decision that critically impacts the organzation, but knowing it is the best long term decision, for the health of the company
* Letting someone else WIN a battle, but ALWAYS winning the war
* Understanding the "ego" in every person, and letting the bigger EGO have the appearance of always winning
* Knowing that when the "energy level" is low, it's time to move on.
* Being able to end things you know are going nowhere, QUICKLY.
* Ending relationships and deals, THE SAME WAY they were started.
The last point is crucial.
When a agreement ends, (for whatever reason) -- being a strong enough person to honestly give feedback, counsel, and insight, that would potentially help the individual that is being impacted. It is not always well recieved, but, in the very least, making oneself available is the key difference.
The point of this, is knowing when to walk away.
Successful people in business, and in life -- more often than not, make the right decisions - and time them right, in regards to walking away, FROM ANYTHING.
No one is correct all the time.
But, the key elements of the "walking away trait" involve more than skill or luck. They involve a trait no one talks about.
People don't want to call it that, but it is.
Because, a good salesperson understands his audience/prospects/clients and employees BETTER than anyone else. And, based on that - they make good "walking away" decisions more often than others.
It's a SALES trait.
The leaders don't have to be in sales, but they are GREAT salespeople.
The ability to empathize, and understand a situation, personality, or problem -- and putting it in the context of -- "what will the timing of this to do to affect me, if I walk away or not..."
Leaders that have this attribute stand out. They make choices that are right more than 50% of the time.....and, when it comes to walking away, it's the Leaders of a company that really UNDERSTAND and COMPREHEND sales that make the right correct decisions...in regards to walking away.
It's better to have a leader who respects, understands, and can sell....than one who does not.