Employee associates expect certain basics and some minimums from their leaders and their managers. For example, they want badly to be seen, heard, and understood. They want to feel appreciated and accepted as a valuable member of their team.
Your role then, as a leader is to earn the faith of your colleagues by developing a positive working environment that is based on trust, respect, success, and achievement. You need to be clear that you expect your team to do their best work and to perform valuable work, day in and day out. Second, you need to tell them and teach them that you expect them to make others successful while they do this work, and to earn the right to receive more meaningful assignments, the kind of assignments that challenge them and lead them to personal and professional growth.
And you must prioritize People Management and it begins with setting expectations and then investing in your employee associates so that you inspire and lead them to personal and professional growth. If you’re interested in learning more about People Management and how to do it well, read on and let our fourth episode on People Management sink in a little bit…
Connect Your People To The Vision And Strategy
One of the best ways to help your employees to connect the dots is to teach them how their work fits into the larger departmental and company objectives and vision. Your People will want to understand why their work is important and the context behind any assignment. When your associates understand the “why” behind your requests and assignments they are able to understand how their work fits into everything else going on in the business and make their work meaningful.
Your colleagues need to connect the dots so that they can stay excited, inspired, and motivated to do their best work, that’s why it is so crucial to spend time and invest in understanding the perspective and context behind everything that they’re doing and everything their teammates are doing. Don’t leave context to chance, provide your colleagues with all of the knowledge and understanding they need so that they can imagine the future and focus on arriving at the destination with strength.
You’ve Got To Serve Somebody
Tremendous leaders learn early that they need to show their team members that they care about them, and not just as a name on an organization chart. Rather, they know that they need to see their colleagues as full, worthy, and deserving human beings. When you begin to exercise your emotional intelligence and demonstrate empathy with your co-workers in times when they are encountering challenges in their work life or personal life, you can reduce their workload temporarily or help them to refocus their attention so that they can find their way back to success. I recommend treating your team like they are valued and allowing them to have personal priorities aside from their work priorities proves to them that you value them and see them as human beings, not just a space on your organization chart.
Speaking of organization charts, try this. Turn your organization chart upside down, so you are at the bottom and the people in your organization are above you. THAT is the right perspective and the right perception to start with. If it wasn’t for those people, your organization wouldn’t need you in a leadership position. You are here to serve them. If they all have success, you’ll have success.
Doing these things, and serving your People creates a bond among all of the members of your team and it improves your employee’s personal sense of well-being. They will need that to rely upon as fuel to help them to weather the storm when adversity hits them and things get rough. Serve others first, and they’ll serve the business. As you do, you’ll create psychological safety by establishing boundaries that everyone on the team must respect if they’re going to interact with every other member of the team in the most efficacious way…
Proactivity And Priorities
It’s always a great idea to invest in your associates by teaching them the importance of choosing to be proactive versus waiting for things to happen. Being biased in a healthy way toward taking action and solving problems beats waiting around for someone else to fix your problems every time, hands down. Encourage your People to anticipate change and adversity and to embrace handling them in a proactive and positive manner whenever possible, which is almost all of the time, right? When you and your team are ready for challenges and adversity and when you’re fully expecting to embrace change positively, you don’t need to waste any energy or any time over-reacting and getting upset over spilled milk.
Just clean up the spilled milk quickly and get back to competing in the field of commerce. Being ready for whatever comes your way is the best approach, and it makes a huge difference in the smoothness of the journey for everyone involved. Model proactivity and model setting the right priorities, and your team of People will almost certainly follow your lead. When you anticipate adversity and change and handle them with aplomb when they arrive, your People will follow your lead. When you show them that the smart thing to do is to prioritize and work on the most impactful things first, they will once again, follow your lead.
Commit To Working On Your Interpersonal Skills
If you intend to be the best leader that you can possibly be, you’re going to have to become a more capable and consistent master of your interpersonal skills, including conversations, managing conflict, providing feedback, receiving feedback, and encouraging collaboration. The only way to develop mastery in these areas is to make a commitment to become deeply experienced and highly skilled in each of those endeavors. Consider hiring yourself an Executive Development Coach, there are hundreds of great coaches available to you. Additionally, consider joining a peer group where you can network and learn from others who have a similar role to your own. Finally, consider investing some hours in watching TED talks, reading great books about interpersonal “soft” skills, and having your manager mentor you.
Your role as a leader means that you must demonstrate that you can consistently get the People around you to do the things that bring success to the team on a consistent basis. If you cannot work effectively as a member of the team and a leader of the team, you’re going to struggle. You MUST work through other People at a very high level, to taste the sweet taste of success. Make the commitment to yourself and at the same time, make the commitment to the People around you, including those you lead. You will never regret it. It will pay dividends for the remainder of your career and in fact, for the rest of your life. Just do it!
Michael is a Master Coach who has been developing Executives and Emerging Leaders for many years. Michael’s Coaching and Consulting firm have five coaches who work with clients all over the world, assisting them in developing their leadership acumen and their Executive Presence. Michael’s team of coaches is located in Arizona, Florida, Iowa, and Minnesota, and the firm works with Business Founders, C-Suite Executives, and Emerging Leaders. Michael and his coaches work with fast-growth companies, often in the technology industry, and his team helps them to narrow the gap between their current state, and where they would love to be in a tremendous future state.
If you’d like more information about Michael Beach Coaching & Consulting visit the website at www.michaelbeachcoach.com, or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Michael hosts a podcast about Leadership and how to develop Emerging Leaders, called “What Are YOU Doing?” and you can find it wherever you listen to podcasts or on Michael’s website.