What comes next? How do we engage with our people?
Leaders and organisations are always looking to the next solution, the next fix. Most leaders have very successful winning strategies. They must be effective as they got you here. Right? Well, maybe. Having the ability to develop fresh eyes is not easy, not easy at all. If people are under pressure, the temptation to close “Do it enough and people will trust you” down and follow your ‘usual’ action set is huge. Creating the space to test, keep in the inquiry not ‘I know the solution’. This might make the biggest difference.
Being committed is not enough. The world is full of very committed people. Less of these commitments end up fulfilled. This can leave us feeling bitter, upset, or even a failure. The ‘self-fulling prophecy’ loop is a minefield. Lifting performance is about shifting the behaviour of everyone in the team. It is not about doing more, working harder, getting tough or giving up. People will respond well if we engage with them and listen to what they need to succeed. If this is a different way of operating, it will not change overnight. Keep showing up. Do it enough and people will trust you.
When we find ourselves in a pressure situation, how do we behave?
First, build enough self-awareness to recognise the warning signs. Too much pressure is not a good thing. Know your triggers, build strategies that help you keep on target. Most of us need a trusted partner to provide support. Find out ‘who you are in the matter of’ x or y. Being clear on your stand sure helps in those difficult conversations. Share what is going on inside with the team, they will join you in the challenge. If you feel you need to come up with the answer, you are just not asking the right questions of your team. Our job is to provide the mental and physical resources our team requires, not be the boss.
What are we learning in engaging with people in our workplace?
After interviewing thousands of workers in Australia, one point came out repeatedly. “Management never ask me what I think?” At the very least, this reduces that ‘skin in the game’. Our team members want to give more. Managers seem to push back, close ranks at the time our teams the most. Why do we do this?