When you’re a leader — no matter how long you’ve been in your role or how hard the journey was to get there — you are merely overhead unless you’re bringing out the best in your employees. Unfortunately, many leaders lose sight of this.
Leaders often do not see the true value of their role in the business, and put too much focus on the wrong things. The quest for success and the fear of not hitting targets, fear of losing bonuses and fear of failing drive leaders into isolation or a posture of micromanagement, where managers become increasingly metric-driven in an effort to reduce costs and improve delivery times. This behavior will quickly destroy your business by lowering engagement. But when leaders are humble, show respect and ask how they can serve employees as they improve the organization, the outcomes can be outstanding.
It’s not that the numbers don’t matter. They do. I am huge fan of score cards. I love efficiency, systems, data analytics and automation. But if you are only disciplined and focused around what you and others do, you will miss the real purpose of leadership, and your company and your people will not grow.
Can I let you in on a secret? Employees who do the actual work of your organization often know better than you how to do a great job. Respecting their ideas — and encouraging them to try new approaches to improve work — motivates employees to bring more of themselves to work.
Leading others well requires support, helping others identify areas of personal and professional growth, and affirming who your team members are as well as what they do. Small changes create a virtuous cycle. As the adage goes, “People will only remember 6% of what you do, but 100% of how you make them feel.”
Regardless of your industry, this is what customers want! And it is also what your team members want. To feel cared for, important, special, and to know you are concerned for them.
Don't miss Pete Lovelace as he takes a deeper dive into virtuous company cultures at SGIA's THREADX 2020 conference (February 23 - 25; Scottsdale, AZ). Learn more and register today.