Do you work in an environment where the leadership exerts their authority through a heavy handed approach to management? Do you feel threatened by the toxicity within the workplace? Do you consider the leadership to be inept and ineffective? If so, then you’re not alone.
Today, more than ever before, it’s imperative for a workplace to operate with a more compassionate, respectful and conciliatory approach. The use of the iron fist is not an effective leadership tool. Unfortunately, too many businesses ignore this golden rule to their detriment.
There’s a saying which goes something like this: ‘You catch more flies with honey than vinegar.’ While the ‘fly’ component might not inspire confidence, the context of the adage is fitting. Great Leaders understand the notion that we inevitably attract more positive people to us by being pleasant, upbeat and approachable, than if we’re negative or disrespectful.
I have worked in several positions in a variety of companies during my life where the ‘leadership’ (I use that term very loosely) was quite poor, almost poisonous. It’s the individuals in these positions who can be narcissistic, disrespectful, and unyielding.
There are many managers who find themselves in positions of authority through default. They land in roles for which they have little or no experience; where they should be supportive and encouraging but instead, become power hungry and egotistical. They lose sight of the big picture. They disconnect from the core company values and forget the credo of the organization.
In today’s business climate, it’s not unusual for a manager to be recruited from outside the organization. This can bring with it many positive factors. It welcomes someone into the work environment who has a fresh perspective; someone who can add a new dimension to the business. This person can often see issues where long term employees might not.
It also has some negative implications. For instance, some of these new people can turn out to be anything but ‘a breath of fresh air.’ They can bring clouds of negative energy to the business, in the form of bad habits, fears, foibles, prejudices and attitude. Their style of management could be totally at odds with your organization, leading to the creation of a very unhealthy environment.
They can also bring a whole new but disruptive work ethic which can destabilize the existing harmony. Their different style and rigid stance can often wreak havoc on the workplace where many good workers might make the choice to leave, taking their skills and experience with them. I have witnessed that happen on many occasions.
When you aspire to the mantle of a Great Leader, understand that the position inevitably brings with it certain responsibilities. It’s imperative that employees be offered stability. It’s based on a platform of honesty, integrity, compassion and generosity. Without someone to guide, support and encourage, the business will ultimately fail.
If you are a business owner, build a strong team of leaders; not just managers. Give them all the tools they need to create a positive and life-enriching environment. Encourage them to interact at a grass roots level. Give them the freedom to create and maintain a very rich and positive atmosphere.
Create a credo for the company: That’s a set of beliefs and guidelines by which everyone is expected to work. Invite employees to contribute to the success of the business. It’s their right and your obligation. Have regular meetings at all levels of the organization. Offer questionnaires to be completed and encourage suggestion for improvement. Be thoughtful and engaging in your responses to questions and enquiries.
Encourage employees to be frank in the information they provide because when honesty prevails, the interaction becomes an indispensable tool of leadership.
Disrespect is disruptive: It’s dishonorable and counterproductive to the core values of a business. An organization can’t continue to run on empty promises. It’s almost impossible to flourish in an atmosphere of negativity.
Effective leaders have the ability to positively influence others through sound decisions and the courage to forge a path ahead, often in the face of monumental adversity.
For personal and professional growth and development, begin today and eagerly embrace the opportunity to be an extraordinary force for good in the global community.
Imagine the possibilities …