[CEO LETTER] Let's build the culture of trust in the harmony of leadership and followership

2015. 10. 23. 09:30


Hello, Hyosung family members!
Now, it is a time full of fresh mood of autumn. As it is the best time in a year for doing activities, I hope everybody fully enjoy a vital daily life.

Recently, Korean National Soccer Team is creating a number of stories while winning in a series of games with good performances. In particular, as new faces who were not known well previously are leading the National team to victories with outstanding performances, more attention are being paid to the National Team. The social consensus seems to attribute the outcome to the National Team's member selection based on ability only by the German head coach Stielike. Watching so many soccer games by himself, Coach Stielike evaluated players only by their abilities regardless of career or fame. So, he discovered such hidden pearls who were merely bench members in the second division, and developed them to the National Team's key strikers. Practicing the leadership based on principles and beliefs, and giving the strong motivation of ‘Door is open to everyone who does his best’ and drawing competition in good faith, he is becoming the driving force strengthening the whole team.


Seeing this case, I realize again that any team can change depending upon the leader. So far, our company has emphasized responsibility management in which each PU, team and individual has strong sense of responsibility for each own area. For the responsibility management to be established well, executives and team managers have to lead by examples, and evaluate and encourage team members on fair standards. Then, as each member does his/her best in work and raise the competitiveness of the team, the outcome of the Company can also be improved.

However, leadership alone cannot solve every problem. Just as the saying "It takes two palms to make a sound", followership is also important for the success of the whole organization. Even if leaders show correct directions and stimulate members, this will be useless unless followers support and follow leaders well. If such attitudes as passive and irresponsible attitude of doing only as being ordered or passing all decisions to higher rank managers, or blaming other persons rather than reflecting on oneself are spread to many members, any vision suggested by leaders may hardly be accomplished. A number of companies introduce such verified innovative management techniques as TPS, but there are not many successful cases. This is because any management technique cannot exhibit its effects, however outstanding it may be, if members only pretend to follow without regarding it as their own matter. When Yubi built the Shu Kingdom, Jegal Gongmyung was there, and when Yubang defeated Hsiang Yu of Cho Kingdom, General Hanshin played a crucial role. Likewise, leaders can shine only with the committed and responsible attitudes of these followers.


It is also important to have a capability to perform well the tasks assigned by leaders. In the CEO Letter of the previous month, I explained about the strategy of General Wellington and mentioned the failed operation to chase Prussian Army by a detached force as one of the reasons for the defeat of Napoleon. General Grouchy who was in charge of the detached force failed to perform his duty and also lost the time to join the main force, which was a main reason for the lost battle. As in this example, failure to perform the assignment due to lack of capability will bring failure not only to the person but also to the whole organization.

However strong sense of responsibility one may have, that sense of responsibility should be backed up by capability and practice to be realized through action and make outcome. As this capability cannot be created overnight by desire only, everyone should always learn and try hard to be the best in one's work and raise one's competitiveness. This way, showing consistently outcome satisfying expectation and building trust relationship, one can be entrusted with larger responsibility and further grow to be a great leader. 

Any company can be a good organization and a developing company, only when it builds such a virtuous circulation structure that great followers grow to be great leaders and great leaders nurture great followers. I hope that all of us try hard together to build the organizational culture of trust as mentioned in Hyosung Way in the harmony of leadership and followership. Thank you.

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