Every personal leadership journey needs a plan. A route to take, a direction to head towards, a way of knowing we are progressing and something we are 100% accountable for. Our nifty ROAD map provides just that…

Personal leadership is all about defining your leadership direction and moving towards it with consistency and clarity.

It’s important to remember that you are in control of developing your personal leadership and our ‘ROAD’ acronym provides a practical tool for steering your development journey in the right direction.

So what does ROAD mean?

R is for Responsibility

Being serious about developing your leadership abilities requires a focused mind and taking responsibility for what you want to achieve in your life. While it may sound like a cliché, you are in control of your personal brand and only you can ensure you are perceived by others in the way you want to be. Good personal leadership requires you to know exactly where you stand on powerful subjects such as ethics, integrity, transparency and your values. Ask yourself how you feel about those powerful words…

Making any behavioural change starts with taking responsibility and truly believing in the change you want to make.

It’s worth asking yourself, out of ten, how serious are you about making the change? If it’s not 10/10, it’s worth reconsidering just how serious you are about it.

O is for Outcomes

‘Start with the end in mind’. It’s an age-old saying that could not be more relevant here. Personal leadership requires success factors to be decided at the start. Put simply, where are you now and where do you want to be? Success is different for everyone, so ensuring you know what success looks like for you is critical. Consider what you want to achieve, why and by when? What is a priority for you? How will these outcomes contribute to your core purpose? Ask yourself all of these questions and agree two or three critical outcomes that you want to accomplish. Knowing these allows you to build the plan to get there.

A is for Action

Whilst planning is a fundamental part of the ROAD tool, not a lot will happen unless we get into gear and accelerate! The ‘A’ in ROAD is about having clear action steps that will get you from A to B. It’s about making clear decisions, and perhaps sacrifices, that you commit yourself to for want of your personal development.

Consistent and sustained action requires energy and focus, so managing your energy in all areas of your life is really important. It’s easy to ‘revert to type’ when we’re tired. Turning actions into habits, although a challenge, will start to eliminate possible relapses and move you closer to your personal leadership goals.

D is for Discipline

Possibly the hardest one of all, remaining disciplined around your agreed actions is the key to success. Again, this is about making habits out of your actions and repeatedly reminding yourself of the reasons why you are committing yourself to change.

ROAD has been drummed into me since the age of about seven! I genuinely believe it provides an excellent approach to self-development. Whether your goals are personal or career-based, it works!

You may have read it, or perhaps heard the quote, but Johnny Wilkinson’s biography makes a very pertinent point about the subject of personal leadership:

“I like to imagine myself, my life, as being under permanent surveillance from a video camera. (…) I could play back the tape (…) totally content that it shows a good representation of who I am as a person and as a rugby player. It is about being strong in professional terms and having values that never slip.” [p. 103]

What a great idea!

If you have any questions about ROAD or how to approach personal leadership, I would be delighted to have a chat with you – and I mean that genuinely, so please do not hesitate to give me a call (0121 665 4060) or drop me a line on LinkedIn.