Here in the UK this weekend, the Liberal Democratic conference kicks off and runs for the next four days in the face of falling poll ratings and growing disquiet amongst Liberal Democratic party members about the policies and direction the new coalition government is going in. This is the first party conference following Deputy Prime Minister and party leader Nick Clegg’s decision to take the party into coalition with the Conservatives at the recent general election.
Now you may ask…..what has this got to do with growing my business?
Well, many businesses decide to pursue partnerships with other businesses to help them grow, access new markets, offer new services or just get things done that they wouldn’t otherwise be able to do.
Partnerships tend to be organic things and need to be able to adapt to survive and work.
However, what the Liberal Democrats are showing us is that many partnerships when they do evolve can be fraught with dangers when leadership takes decisions that many of their team do not understand or agree with. This can mean that many members of the original teams can feel let down with new partnership arrangements and the changes they bring.
This seems like a problem that is brewing for Nick Clegg and his party when in a recent article from AFP called ‘Clegg faces torrid time at LibDem conference‘, I read the following:
Lib Dem rules state that motions passed by the annual conference automatically become party policy, but Clegg’s chief of staff, Norman Lamb, said earlier this week that its ministers would ignore any ballot that clashed with the coalition deal.
I understand that leaders have to take tough decisions for the good of the organisation and, sometimes, those decisions will not be to the liking of a lot of people. However, the real skill of a leader is balancing those decisions and taking their people with them on the journey.
If this is a sanctioned viewpoint of Nick Clegg then letting your Chief of Staff make a statement like that on the eve of a party conference does not seem the best way to manage that communication process.
I wonder how Liberal Democrat party members reading that article will feel? So, much for leaders listening to and having the trust of their team and then taking them on a journey.
There may be trouble brewing unless he can start to earn the trust of the Liberal Democrat party members again but given that statement he may have a lot of work ahead of him.
If this was your leader in your business, how would you feel?
Thanks to 138 Photo for the image.