Do you find yourself and your employees less engaged and less productive in the workplace than you would like? According to a Gallup poll, more than 70 percent of the American workforce today is “unengaged”—which means that most of the people in your organization are only showing up to work to go through the motions and collect their paycheck.
Workplace culture and creating a positive and productive work environment is a passion of mine. I have attended conferences to reinvent and improve the workplace and have written previously on employee engagement. We spend so much of our waking hours are work – work should not suck!
How do we improve the workplace and the low morale that appears to exist in so many companies? One of the most effective ways to change workplace culture is if the leadership in the company changes the way they manage and lead their employees. If leaders change their behaviors and attitudes, it sets the example, and has a trickle down effect on the rest of the team.
One way for leaders to make a positive change is to put their people first. To move from a mindset of ‘me’ to a mindset of ‘you’ or ‘we’ and focus on what their teams and employees need to be successful instead of their own needs and wants.
I recently read the book, People Leadership by Gina Folk and was inspired by how she demonstrated that focusing on people can transform a company and catapult its success.
How do you move from a position of You to Them?
Here are 5 strategies from People Leadership that can help you move from a position of You to Them and ensure theirs (and your) success:
Build a strengths-based team.
Having the right people doing the right things is the only way to produce long-term results that are effective for the individual as well as the company. Take the time to ensure that the team members are aligned with the roles that best fit their talents and skill sets before beginning a new project.
As tempting as it is to do this, you cannot and should not try to do everything by yourself. If this describes you, then you are a control freak, not a leader. Team members and employees have good ideas and are capable of great things—but it’s your job as a leader to engage them. Ask for their input, and implement some of their recommendations.
We are all unique, and we each have different ways of operating and communicating. As a leader, it is up to you to adapt to your team, not the other way around. True people leaders adapt their style to meet the needs of their team members in order to achieve results.
Leaders receive a ton of demands from all levels of an organization, as well as from outside influences like customers, vendors, and shareholders—but that’s no excuse for shutting yourself away from your employees. As a leader, it is critical to be accessible to your team. This means always keeping your door, heart, and mind open at work so your people always feel they can come interact and connect with you.
With all the pressing demands a managerial position brings, “fun” is not a word that usually makes it into conversations about leadership. But remember, people run businesses, and most people thrive when they are having fun. Don’t be afraid to take time-outs to have a laugh. When everyone’s happy, you’ll find it’s easier to tackle large issues that need addressing.
About the Book:
In People Leadership, Gina Folk covers thirty proven techniques that she learned and utilized during a twenty-five-year career managing people at a Fortune 500 company. Unlike many of the leadership theories you’ll find out there, Folk’s teachings have been implemented and shown to work with real people in real situations. Using Folk’s practices, any individual charged with managing or supervising others at any level can learn to re-engage their employees and improve their company’s productivity—and become the boss they’ve always wanted to be. You can pick up a copy on Amazon.
About the Author:
The author, Gina Folk, has more than twenty years of experience helping organizations and individuals to achieve outstanding performance results, and has led global organizations in change efforts that have delivered improvements valued in the tens of millions of dollars. She holds an MBA from Belmont University, and is a certified Lean Six Sigma Black Belt.
Why Should You Read People Leadership?
I love the simple but important message that Gina wants to spread around the world; “Focus on the people, and the results will flow.” Gina’s strategies are easy to implement and start using now.
If you have read People Leadership I would love to know your thoughts on it. Please leave a comment below.
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