My latest interview brings you phenomenal insight into what it takes to become a change leader in a world that is full of change. In this interview, we talk with Dr. Samuel Chand. As a Dream Releaser, Dr. Samuel R. Chand serves Pastors, ministries and businesses as a Leadership Architect and Change strategist. Dr. Chand has served as senior Pastor, college President, Chancellor and President Emeritus.

He personally consults, mentors and coaches some of the country’s largest church Pastors, speaks regularly at leadership conferences, churches, corporations, Leadership Roundtables, Minister’s conferences, seminars and other leadership development opportunities. He was named in the top-30 global leadership Gurus list. His singular vision for his life is to Help Others Succeed. Being raised in a pastor’s home in India has uniquely equipped Dr. Chand to share his passion – that of mentoring, developing and inspiring leaders to break all limits – in ministry and the marketplace.

We are truly privileged to bring to you the following interview on Leadership.

Todd: How can MBA graduates become change leaders?

Dr. Chand: The old adage “ the only constant in the world is change” is still true. The challenge with most MBA programs is that they are taught by people like me; that is, boomers, for whom stability and consistency is a mantra. How do we keep the environment stable? How do we make changes or translate changes? The risk threshold for my group is not as great as the risk threshold for students coming up in current MBA programs. To be a change leader is this environment, the professor or mentor has to be a person that transcends their generational stability and consistency issues and be willing to go above and beyond them. Change really is a more constant art. You can’t teach people to change. It is the environment that allows people to change. I mean an environment where change, risk taking, innovation, creativity and new ideas are not frowned upon but are seen as experimentation. That’s what creates the leader attitude. But it has to begin with what happens in the classroom and the environment students find themselves in.

Todd: What skills do students and graduates need to focus on to become a leader?

Dr. Chand: Students and graduates need to build both hard and soft competencies. The hard competencies include project management, strategic planning, implementation, team creation. The soft competencies are far more important than the hard ones. Soft competencies include skills like listening. Listening is one of the top priorities where you are not just hearing biologically but are listening internally, not only to what is being said but what is being omitted. You must go after the omissions because what is not being said is a whole lot more volatile than what is being said. Another soft skill is the idea of having organic conversations. That is holding a conversation that doesn’t begin with the end in mind. You got into the conversation open minded and let the conversation take you where it is going to go. Most people that come out of management or business schools come out with strategic conversations where they have formed some type of mental template. This means that if they take the conversation down a certain road or path, they will get a certain result or outcome. Lastly, a great soft skill is putting aside what you have to bring to the conversation aside and not letting your contribution be the centerpiece of the interaction. It is not about getting this account, getting the job or what you’ll get out of it. It’s about helping others succeed. It’s about going into a situation where you are thinking about what can make this other person successful. It’s about a win, not a win-win. A win-win is a 50% proposition. A win is a 100% proposition. Every promotion or raise you’ll get will come because you have created significant value for someone else, so much so that they want to continue to take you along on their journey. If you make them successful, you will be successful.

Being a change leader today requires the development of some unique soft competencies. They are unique in the fact that these aren’t the type of skills business schools teach. Taking from one of today’s leadership gurus, who has tested these skills in many different environment with many different audiences, the soft side is your ticket to greater success, even if you aren’t focusing on making yourself successful. Good luck on your journey.

Thanks, Dr. Chand for sharing your time and experience with us. You can learn much more about Dr. Chand at www.samchand.com. You can capture more of his wisdom from his many books and CD sets located on his Resources page.

Author's Bio: 

Todd Rhoad is the managing director of BT Consulting, an Atlanta based management and career consulting company. He is the author of Blitz The Ladder and creator of the HENRY Series for MBAs. Todd created MBAWriters, an international group of writers supporting MBAs through contributions to magazines, ezines, blogs and websites. He holds a MSEE and MBA.