Last week we talked about finding barriers in the workplace and discovering what impact they have on your team members. Some of you have five members on your team, some of you reading this have hundreds. The same principles apply. And no matter what level you work at, everything good you do will have a positive ripple effect. If not now, it always will eventually.
Good leadership is like compound interest. It may build slowly, but it’s concrete as a result.
When a HaysenSandiacre employee had a family emergency that required him to stay with his wife for three months until she made a full recovery, his fellow employees combined their vacation days to give to him. Again, it wasn’t to get a pat on the back, nor was it done with a large announcement. It was just what they did. A quiet, solid trust.
Imagine a work environment where that level of loyalty is the norm?!
So it may seem like a letdown to tell your family that you’ll be celebrating Thanksgiving a day late, but the loyalty it builds in your team to see their leader making a sacrifice for the young new intern is exponential. That’s something that lasts a lot longer than a Powerpoint presentation on leadership.
It can also make an impact on your own family. I am fiercely protective of my time with family, so don’t get me wrong. I don’t like missing holidays! And I am NOT suggesting you make a practice of it at the expense of your greatest treasure – your family. However, during those leadership moments where duty truly calls, take a moment to teach your children before heading out the door. Help them connect the dots regarding what you are doing. They learn from your example. And then, years later when you delightfully observe them leading well, and they relate to you the seed that was planted, I assure you there is no greater feeling.
Your challenge this week:
Make a sacrifice for one of your team members.
Don’t make a big deal out of it. Nothing is as counter-productive in leadership as self-aggrandizement. Find something you can do that will show your employees that you are at their level and willing to lift them up. If that means buying a Subway platter for those pulling a long shift – do it.
Don’t hesitate to help the CNA with a full load of sheets as she passes by. Not on her team? As a leader, everyone is on your team and you’re on their’s. Supervisors do just that, they supervise a team. Leaders, however, leave a legacy…a legacy of servant leadership.
Good luck this week!