Most of us long for the same close bonds with colleagues in the pursuit of common goals, shared values, and a compelling purpose. It makes showing up to work that much easier.
Where does it all start? Building up such a culture of strong collaboration starts with leaders setting the tone for creating the conditions necessary to drive human performance.
These leaders understand that true leadership is about placing the good of those led over the self-interest of the leader. Unfortunately, this is a tall order for many.
Truth is, leaders who choose to value and develop others for the common good of each individual will have a significant impact on the people they employ, and on the customers they serve.
6 questions to ask.
Eventually, leaders at every level must hold up the mirror and ask some self-reflective questions to assess whether they meet the high standards of leadership. For this simple exercise, the more "No"s you answer to the following six questions, the bigger the clue that you may have some rough waters ahead (or a great opportunity to develop your leadership skills).
1. Do you understand your own emotions and the emotions of others?
Great leaders are willing to be transparent and known; they are self-aware and understand themselves and their triggers to better self-manage. They also understand others and will flex their empathy muscles. They're open to input from others, even those below them.
2. Do you truly value others as human beings?
Great leaders value others by believing and trusting in their people. They show respect and dignity and maintain a high view of their employees. They listen receptively, without judgment, and often put others first before self.
3. Do you have a natural tendency to want to grow and develop others?
Great leaders provide for learning and growth and develop the potential of others. They build up others through encouragement and affirmation.
4. Do you guide people toward a bold future?
Great leaders envision the future and enroll their people to carry out the vision together. They take initiative and move out ahead, then bring their team along by clarifying goals and expectations.
5. Do you share your leadership?
Great leaders share their power by pushing authority down to lower ranks, and through it all, empower others to make decisions. By sharing status in relation to position and authority, they use persuasion to influence others instead of coercion.
6. Do you foster a team or culture founded on diversity and inclusion?
Great leaders promote a sense of belonging and connection for all team members, working collaboratively and emphasizing teamwork. They recognize and value the differences of others and whatever gifts, talents, personalities, and viewpoints they bring to the team.