We all want to find and employ great people and it seems to get harder and harder every year. We want our people to buy into our Vision and engage their teams in it. Not in a rational ‘this is the financial target we want to achieve in 2020’ way, but in an emotional, passionate and inspirational way, that gets our people motivated to feel part of the journey. We want our people to understand why the business exists and what it is here to do – the Simon Sinek ‘Why’.
People need to believe that our businesses are here for a real purpose, that they don’t just come to do a job from 9-5 to get a wage. Gallup Q12, the world’s best employee survey tool, shows (in Question 8) that employees who understand the purpose of their business are more engaged and contribute more to the business.
We want our people to share our Core Values and role model them every day. Do they know what they are? Do they see you and the leaders around you living them every day? Or perhaps you are paying lip service to them, as the leaders of Enron did when they carved them in marble in the lobby of their building, before leading the business into financial meltdown with massive accounting fraud!
We want our people to not only be motivated at work, but also to motivate others. Do they know why their staff come to work and how to motivate them individually? Do they understand motivation theories and how to apply them day in day out? Are they motivated by you?
We need our people to develop trusting relationships with their peers and their colleagues alike, so that they can challenge and support in equal measure. Have you developed a culture of vulnerability-based trust where you show that you don’t get it right all the time, encouraging others to do the same?
We want them to lead change, both large scale and every day, inspiring people to follow. We need them to challenge the status quo, looking for day to day improvements in all aspects of the business, so that it evolves at a pace and becomes a dynamic ecosystem.
AND we want them to all this with a ‘never say die’ grit and determination to succeed.
The thing is, we won’t find and develop the next generation of leaders in our businesses unless firstly we are very clear on all these things and secondly, we role model them every day. Take a look in the mirror and ask yourself if you and your top team have your Vision, Core Purpose and Values clearly articulated and are regularly communicating and engaging your people in them. Ask yourself whether you are using them in recruitment, induction, performance management and succession planning. And most importantly of all, ask yourself if your top team are all holding each other accountable to be role models for the culture you want around you.
These are the most important parts of leading a business, it’s where you should be spending most of your time and it’s where you will get the biggest bang for your buck.
It’s called Emotional Leadership!