As a leader you’re going to always be searching for ways to empower your people to grab the brightest future possible. you want to encourage and inspire them to levels of performance far above anything they can imagine. We are of course, supposed to be developing leaders. One motivational techniques is to let them see the future. A peek at the future may be a great way to get someone out of their comfort level and enable them to grow. My question today is, should that picture be more positive or realistic?
Organizations have begun to flatten the hierarchy of leadership. Instead of clearly defined structures with team leaders and project managers, people are being placed on teams with common goals and overall objectives. Sometimes, there are no official “titles” when working on a group project. A first year employee may have a better idea than a senior manager with 20 years in the business. This can actually work to “over-empower” a younger employee, causing cockiness. As millennials enter the workforce, this situation can cause a rift with the older generations. Not because the ideas are different, new or better. At times, some millennials can come off as dismissive towards older generations. Some feel entitled to the same pay as a senior member whose been doing it for 20 years, because their title is the same. Right or wrong, they have been labeled as the “instant gratification generation”. They want it now and it’s not fair if they aren’t getting it. Raises, promotions, corner office, etc…. I will say this as a generation X’er, trained by baby boomers, who has 20+ years left in the tank. Slow your roll.
As leaders, we need to be in tune with our team in order to solve problems. That means we have to listen. In order to ensure you are listening to the right thing, you need to ask the right questions. Here are three ways to make that happen.
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Last week, while on vacation, I had a chance to watch a lot of football. (American Football) That’s when I saw something that got my “leadership senses” tingling. I was compelled to share my thoughts here.
People are afraid right now. It’s a fact. They justify their fears by saying “this or that could happen” and “the future is unknown”. By that logic we would always be afraid and unfortunately, that’s true for a lot of people. On the inside, we know we’re not supposed to feel this way. We innately know that on a daily basis, our life should be set up to live without constant fear. That’s why we go to work, earn a living, put a roof over our head, clothes on our back, support our children, etc… We’re naturally driven to seek out a sense of peace and security. One could argue that when we are fearful we are in a sense broken, or in a broken situation. So, how can we fix it?
Ever been in a really tough spot in your career? Have you ever been forced to work in a group where the team argued most of the time? Did you get passed up for that promotion and raise? Is there distrust in the workplace culture? I’m sure we’ve all been in tough environments and our first instinct is to escape. We wish we could fast forward to the end and see how it turns out. Let me tell you a story about tough environments.
Forming a team of key players and aligning them around goals is important. This enables ideas to be flushed through competent folks and earns respect for the leader, as he/she allows the team to grow and share in the success. Understanding the individual strengths of team members and how those strengths work together in a collaborative effort is paramount to the team’s success. Goal implementation doesn’t happen overnight, but a committed team aligned toward the same goal can make the journey worth it! Have you formed your team yet?