How I’ve Changed: Alison McGregor

04 May 2017 -


HSBC Scotland CEO Alison McGregor spoke to Professional Manager about the evolution of her leadership style

My leadership style has evolved. In the early years, I didn’t fully appreciate the value a leader could generate by inspiring others – creating confident employees.

What difference does it make? Confident employees focus on the customer, build great relationships and create advocates for the business. They are non-hierarchical, treat others with respect and pride themselves on role-model behaviour. They seek to understand risks and don’t fear them. They make decisions faster and aren’t afraid to be wrong. They listen well and challenge. They assess their performance and take action. They are committed to self-development and not afraid to seek help. They make a more engaged and effective workforce, delivering growth, managing risk and increasing customer advocacy.

My leadership style is now less formal, non-hierarchical and reflects my core values. I try to lead through energising others and reserve the use of authority for rare and critical circumstances. I am much more open about myself and I share stories to help me articulate purpose.

I am now more inclined to see change as opportunity, ask for help and encourage ideas and innovation from others.

Read more: The 5 greatest examples of change management in business history

The younger leader would have put herself under pressure to have all the answers. In my mind, being committed to performance management was good business, but at some stage I realised it was good people practice.

People deserve to be managed fairly and professionally.

Read the latest edition of Professional Manager

Powered by Professional Manager