Engaging the people on your team, in your organization or your company is crucial to maximizing organizational performance! It is one of the most important leadership issues on a daily basis. Employee engagement on every level of the organization is the foundation of sustainable organizational success and leaders on every level of the hierarchy must do their part every single day.
Leaders are needed for one predominant reason: to create results!
On that notion, I define leadership as creating results THROUGH people. The key word is “through” and there is one more angle to consider: Leadership is situational. Leaders need to acquire a comprehensive “tool set” to deal with the wide variety of challenges in the most effective fashion.
Leadership is all about connecting with the people in your organization, on your team – employee engagement is a key feature. Here are again some very basic, common-sense ground rules for leadership. What would be the reason to document such common-sense ground rules? Very simple… common sense is unfortunately not so common!
Effective leaders are truly passionate and have developed the ability to engage the people they lead because leading people isn’t just about getting the job done. To generate enthusiasm for what needs to be done effective leaders generally have to go above and beyond what the job actually calls for.
Leading by example. The best way to get a point across is to be the model to emulate. Set the stage with solid self-leadership (aka self-discipline) and walk the talk without compromise. Your employees will ultimately follow your lead.
Get your hands dirty. You can’t clean a house without being in it. Sometimes you need to show your employees that no one is above doing tasks that are undesirable or unattractive.
Make a difference to your people. Create positive excitement and challenge your team with stretch targets. Stand out as a leader and role model for your employees. Never forget to recognize achievements small or big, an authentic mention of a job well done carries great value!
Gain trust and respect. When you get the trust and respect from your people you won’t need your formal authority anymore to get things done. You’ll have a much easier time leading employees when they respect your rules and boundaries and trust your leadership. Creating an environment for authentic engagement will support that effort significantly. However, keep in mind that you can only gain trust by extending trust and respect is a two-way street!
Be empathetic to personal matters. What happens outside of work will always have a significant effect on the quality of work produced as well as productivity, too. Consequently, it is important to be sensitive and attentive if employees have personal issues or needs that keep them from concentrating on their job and their tasks. The notion that people need to keep personal things away from the workplace is wishful thinking. Reality is that personal life and work life are totally connected and impact each other at all times – 24/7.
Be unique as a leader. You are unique as a person, we all are. Become the best “you” possible, embrace your uniqueness and integrate it into your approach to leadership. Every function requires something different and you should be proud to be adept at your particular role. Learn from others but don’t attempt to “impersonate” other leaders.
Remember that ethics matter above all. Be authentic and reliable in all of your business and personal relationships. Your reputation is the only possession that really matters long-term.
Be receptive for new ideas. Effective leaders are tuned to detect new ideas independent of the source. Make sure your mind is always open for the next thing, you never know where your next great inspiration will come from. Employee engagement will foster the flow of new ideas, too!
Get to know your people. Acquire more than just their names. Get to know your employees’ family backgrounds, likes, and dislikes. If you manage to do so, not only will you become more personable but also far more effective. Remember, leadership is creating results through people!
Obviously, if you chose to apply these simple rules you will become a more effective leader. Make them your habit and they will serve you very well!
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