If leaders are able to reframe their role and responsibility as that of servant leaders, productivity will grow and engagement will grow.
If someone stopped by and asked your team today what your performance expectations are for this year, could they give a prompt, specific answer? Could they do the same for values expectations – how they’re supposed to treat each other?
Loyalty. Duty. Respect. Selfless Service. Honor. Integrity. Personal Courage. The US Army’s values are clearly spelled out, as core values are in all military organizations.
In my work with clients around the globe, I hear about team members’ frustrations with their leaders all the time. These frustrations are often based on the leader’s lack of consistent authenticity.
I still remember being called into the boss’s office. Not one to get into trouble much, it was unusual to have a sit-down with the boss over an issue that was my fault. But it happened, and was part of three distinct situations with a prevalent theme that got my attention. These opportunities for improvement led to beneficial professional–and personal–growth.
One thing most leaders can agree on is that organizations need rules; how else can fairness and consistency be ensured across the organization? But when rules devolve they can inhibit efficiency, effectiveness, sanity, well-being, and more.
Did you know that anyone who enlists in the US military the first time incurs an eight-year service commitment? A recruit might sign a two- or four-year active duty contract; after their active duty period ends, they engage in active or inactive reserve duty for the remainder of that 8-year commitment, whether having been drafted or having volunteered into service.
How long has it been since you’ve received a genuinely sincere written or electronically typed thank you note? The nice yet empty, “Thank You” response that we use so easily in emails, texts, and social media is not what I’m referring to. I’m talking about the moment makers; the sweet, thought out, and inspiring thank you note that makes you stop and want to genuinely thank the person back for making your day.
In the past, I have taught a class on Effective Time Management, where students sit for a day or two to just focus on this concept. There are also many books and blog postings about time management out there, many of which have similar “conventional wisdom” concepts worked into them.
Do your leaders and team members know exactly how great corporate citizens are supposed to behave in your workplace today? Values set the stage for workplace inspiration but values expectations without observable, tangible, measurable behaviors fail to create an environment of trust, dignity, and respect.