Double your workforce for free: Liz Wiseman explains Multipliers

Multipliers by Liz Wiseman is the best leadership book I have read.

The premise is that you can double your workforce for free by being a good leader.  Liz uses the term “Multiplier” to describe the most effective type of leader.

I had the good fortune to meet Liz at the recent Growth Summit.  I interviewed her to ask the following two questions:

  • What is a Multiplier?
  • What are the top two things you can do to be a Multiplier?

Here’s what I learnt:

What is a Multiplier?
Mulitpliers are leaders who use their intelligence and capability to bring out the smarts and intelligence in the people around them. They’re leaders who literally make people smarter and more capable in their presence.

Contrast this with Diminishers. Diminishers are leaders who often need to be the smartest person in the room, and they end up shutting down and stifling the intelligence in the room. Our research has shown that Multipliers don’t get a little bit more, they get twice the intelligence and capability than diminishers do.

Multipliers by Liz Wiseman

What are the top two things you can do to be a Multiplier?

Number 1: Think in terms of questions.
Instead of having the answers as the leader, have the questions that cause other people to think that shifts the burden of thinking over to other people .

Number 2: Shamelessly ask people to do hard things.
Most leaders when they see their people overworked, they pull back and they don’t want to overdo it.   Multipliers shamelessly ask people to do things that are hard. They give them challenges but they believe in them. They ask them to do hard work because that causes them to learn, to grow, and act intelligently.

Thanks Liz.

It was awesome when Liz asked my business partner Toby Jenkins and me to explain to the audience how we ran our “Native Genius” activity at Bluewire.

Toby & me during Liz's native genius activity

If you’d like to read more Toby has actually written a post about it over at his blog.  How to Discover “Native Genius” – Taking action on Multipliers.

And stay tuned for Toby’s follow up post explaining how we’ve put people’s native genius to work.

You can follow @LizWiseman on Twitter or check out MultipliersBook.com

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