Today my focus is on leadership and I’ll show you an easy way to obtain it versus demanding it.
Leadership is often viewed as authority, control, direction, supervision and/or guidance. Let’s add a regularly overlooked leadership skill, empathy. Empathy means that you figuratively put yourself in someone else’s shoes and understand why they feel the way they do. It is derived from root words meaning ‘in’ and ‘feeling’. A 2018 Texas A & M study found that empathetic leadership improves an employee’s behavior, performance and production. People will care about you, when they feel you care about them. Think about it……Recall a time that you may have spoken to a workplace superior who appeared to have little understanding of where you were coming from and showed no desire to understand you. Most likely it destroyed the trust you had in that person. (And in the organization for hiring such a leader!)
Looking for a way to modify your leadership style or approach and become more empathetic? Here is a simple starting point. Meet with your staff individually and ask them what it is like for them to work for you, your company or organization; how has it affected them; what do they believe would make the workplace better? Your sole job is to listen without defending or judging. Get into their world with your ears versus your words. Do this regularly, act on their feedback, and it will be hard not to see productivity and employee satisfaction increasing. This will result in a happy and productive workplace with a high employee retention rate while adding more money to your bottom line. As my clients will tell you, it’s your job to adapt to your employees. It is not their job to adapt to you.
Want to see other ways you can enhance your leadership skills. Contact me for a FREE 30 minute coaching session and experience what it is like to be valued, supported and truly heard.