Effective leaders love people and kindness plays an important role. They are authentic, do what they say that they are going to do and create a motivational environment. Daniel Waldschmidt, a highly respected sales strategist, consultant, and acquaintance of mine stated once in an address to a group of business people that kindness is fundamental to sustainable success in sales. I fully agree and I am expanding on that notion and claim that (authentic) kindness is a key success factor of effective leadership.
I would like to challenge any leader to make a serious effort for a full month to be authentically kind to all the people you meet and interact with. At the end of that month reflect and assess what happened to the relationships, the engagement, and enthusiasm with the people you lead. The impact will not only be reflected in the interaction with those you lead but also the example you set about interacting with everyone else, peers, superiors, customers, vendors, etc.
Leadership is not about the leader but it is everything about those that are lead.
The best thing of all is that being kind does not require financial investments or expense approval, no project cost estimate, nothing – JUST DO IT! …as they would say at Nike.
Here are my 10.5 ideas for gifts of kindness:
Offer a kind word to others and your kindness will be returned with kindness. Humanity was actually created to be kind.
Give a genuine smile and give it to everyone you meet, and you will receive smiles in return.
Bestow appreciation and your own life will appreciate, and in turn, you will be greatly valued.
Present good thoughts about others, and also about what you find yourself doing. You will live a good life, and good thoughts will be thought about you.
Grant a cheerful disposition and your own cheerfulness will be cheered.
Offer happiness and you will be unable to avoid the happy feeling that comes with it, and brings happiness in return, too.
Provide hope and observe hopelessness disappear, believe rise, and joy flourish.
Give encouragement and you will be enriched with the courage to face each day, as well as attract others that encourage to you.
Offer your time to a greater cause than yourself, and it will cause you to be rewarded in ways that you can only begin to envision.
Bestow honor where honor is due, for this is the honorable thing to do, and be prepared to be honored, too.
10.5 Be authentic in anything you do, especially with respect to kindness, as it will change your thoughts for the better and the world around you for the best!
Good luck and let me know how it works for you!