Every person who truly cares about the quality, volume, and overall mission of his or her work is a tremendous asset to any organization.
In my experience as a coach and c-level executive, I learned the hard way how important it is to select people who care, and de-select people who don’t care. That’s basic leadership – surround yourself with an amazing team.
Once you’ve got the right team, what’s next is an even more important leadership lesson: It’s not the leader’s role to motivate, engage or otherwise try to make people care.It’s your job instead to treat people well, and avoid handling them and their work in ways that make them STOP caring.
Here are ten ways to do that:
1. Be candid and direct with them, even when that’s hard or you’d rather they didn’t have to hear the hard things.
2. Challenge them with a significant workload, but don’t overload them -- enable them to balance work and life.
3. Talk to them in respectful ways that validate them and their ideas.
4. Be present, responsive, and available to them, ensuring you spend time with them regularly.
5. Show interest in and actively support their learning and career development.
6. Recognize their accomplishments, spotlight them in senior forums, and make sure they get credit for wins.
7. Don’t ask or tell them to do things you wouldn’t do, such as anything shady, unethical, or otherwise reprehensible.
8. When you give them responsibility for something, give them authority to act on it independently, in their own way.
9. From time to time, ask them for feedback about how you are leading them; take what they say to heart, and do something about it.
10. Ensure the impact of your leadership on your people, and your organization on the world overall are both good, and therefore sustainable.