Privately, each person knows that they are a multi-layered being, multi-talented with depths of sensitivity, awareness and comprehension, creativity and capabilities that few others have seen or comprehend.
Yet, often, these talents and depths are rarely taken into account when people are being managed. It’s as if leaders and managers totally forget, ignore or go blank to the idea that the people who work for them are intelligent, competent and capable of thinking for themselves and able to resolve problems without direction or micro-management.
So a new way to motivate staff more effectively, is to remember that each person who works for you or alongside you is as multi-talented and intelligent as yourself! Because they are! Maybe not in precisely the same ways as you are, but different in some ways, and perhaps in ways more suited to deal with the problems and challenges facing them. So leaders and managers, think better of people, expect more of them than even of yourself, and you will undoubtedly be astonished in how accomplished they can demonstrate to you they are!
“Irene Rosenfeld, CEO of Mondelez International has said: “Our emerging workforce is not interested in command-and-control leadership. They don’t want to do things because I said so; they want to do things because they want to do them.” This kind of perspective recognises that it is not just Gen Y employees who want the power to exercise their own abilities in progressing the organisation for whom they work – it is a larger and wider part of the work-force – the collective intelligence, if you like – that seeks to exercise its will.
Our twenty-first century world of work is fundamentally changing, and leaders like Irene Rosenfeld recognise that their people have the intelligence to know what needs doing and are able (if leaders don’t stop them) from taking the initiative do what’s needed. Creating an environment to be able to empower people derives from having this kind of mindset. Sometimes great leadership means getting out of the way and letting them!
I have been privileged to get see this about each and every person I have coached. I have seen many people’s unique talents, strengths and many facets of their intelligence. I have witnessed the competence and skills which they have brought out of their personal reservoirs of hidden depths to deal with their challenging circumstances. Each individual, however dim or narrow in their role has talents awaiting exploration and release. Great managers extend the credit that such people do, provide them opportunities to exercise, allow them to learn, to fail and then to succeed.
The long term results of such a strategy leads to increased confidence, capability and performance. The results not only accrue to the individual, but also to the team, and if the strategy is applied to all workers, then to the whole organisation.
7 March 2016
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