NMP - April 2017 - 62

special focus on LEADERSHIP

a special focus on LEADERSHIP

the importance of self-awareness and humility in leadership

Once you have found your
leaders, the next challenge is
keeping them. Retaining good
leaders really comes down to
three things. First, empowering
them. Second, knowing them.
And, third, allowing them to fail.
Empowering them
In my experience, good leaders
are attracted to an organization
where they can feel
empowered. Leaders want to
lead. They are not focused on
the risks or downsides that
come with having the full
authority to execute. Good
leaders will run and execute
against their authority and take
ownership of their mistakes.
Knowing them
It is important to get to know
your leaders, where their head
is, their strengths and
weaknesses, then at times work
on complementing strategies;
find someone with a
complementary skill set and

make a partnership. Match one
person's strengths against
another's weaknesses.
Allowing them to fail
Encouraging leaders to take
risks and allowing them to fail
without fear of retribution is
important. This concept works
best in a collaborative
environment, where you sink or
swim together-make sure
everyone knows they do not
have to work in a silo, create
more of a spider web of
accountability, and set up
incentives to succeed together
as a team.
By empowering them,
knowing them, and allowing
them to fail, I have found that
leaders will naturally decide to
care and stretch elsewhere, and
be willing to help in other areas
that could be holding back the
business. In this way, leaders
are not just focused on
delivering in their own area, but

a special focus on

continued from page 61

in ways that help move the
business forward.
In fact, what I admire most in
leaders-the two most important
traits-are profound selfawareness and humility. This is
especially important in a fastgrowing company. Leaders have
to be able to keep pace and to
grow with the company and the
only way to do that is through
humility and self-awareness.
Other important traits include
having the courage to make the
right decisions, to be honest, and
to make unpopular decisions.
Also, people who know how to
cut through the noise and get to
the most critical aspects, who

know how to prioritize, always
make very good leaders. These
are the people who do not overly
complicate things, who simplify,
and communicate with crystal
clarity. Being fearless is also
important. At a minimum, leaders
cannot fear change.
Beyond that, another
important trait is the ability to
look beyond yourself - where
money is not always the primary
driver. At AAG, I look for people
who want to build a long-lasting
business or legacy; who want to
make a dent in this world; who
are motivated to solve a big
social issue. To me, that's true
leadership.

Reza Jahangiri is the founder and chief executive officer
of American Advisors Group (AAG), serving as CEO since
July 2005. He also works as co-chairman on the National
Reverse Mortgage Lenders Association's (NRMLA) board
of directors and is co-chairman of the association's policy
committee, dedicated to the efficient implementation of
critical industry reforms.

APRIL 2017 n National Mortgage Professional Magazine n

NationalMortgageProfessional.com

62

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a s


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of NMP - April 2017

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