How do you build a sustainable business? Start by finding a sustainable leader. So argues this article from AccountingWeb, anyway.

“That means having a leader who improves employee morale, workplace environment and the community,” the article states. “Forget about boosting profits with a no-holds-barred, pillage-and-plunder approach. Sustainable leaders strengthen the bottom line by creating loyalty with employees, clients and the community— the result of showing they value their staff and taking civic responsibility.”

Sounds good. But where do you find such leadership?

David Maister has some ideas. In his most recent article, Maister — an expert on the management of professional services firms — offers a “diagnostic tool” to help organizations select the right leader. The tool consists of a number of weighted questions that help organizations determine the qualities they want their leaders to possess.

“If you are like other firms with whom I have used this exercise,” Maister writes, “you will find that it will force many participants to really reflect in depth (many of them for the first time) what kind of leader they truly think is best for the firm and, perhaps more importantly, what kind of leader they are prepared to accept and be guided by.”

Deep stuff. Check out the questions for yourself. How do your organization’s leaders measure up?

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