Given that leadership is all about people: getting the best out of them; inspiring them to go for big bold goals; motivating them to continue when the going gets tough; it’s clear to me, that leadership is a contact sport.
Which is why I find it so strange that many managers choose to remain in their offices distancing themselves from their teams. I have even heard managers tell newly promoted managers to establish some distance between them and their teams to make it clear who is the boss.
Trust me, people know who the boss is, that’s always very clear, you don’t need to stay in your office all day restricting people’s access to you to establish the new hierarchy.
In fact, I would say that is probably top of the not to do list for new leaders or manager. This is even truer nowadays as Millenials have grown up in a world of social media where connections and accessibility are the norms.
People want to get to know their leaders, they want to be connected to them, they want to hear the messages directly from them, not through some corporate email or brochure. You cannot inspire people as much though written words as you can by speaking to them directly.
This is technique which has been known for over thousands of years, even Julius Caesar walked with is him men, ate with his men from time to time, and during battles he woul go close to the front lines when things were tough and praise people by name.
This is how we lead, by connecting with people, by showing that we are part of the team, and when we do that we build much stronger trust, commitment, and loyalty.
And when you have better trust, commitment, and loyalty, you will get much better results.
So don’t just sit in your office protected by your assistant: make time in your day to get out there and meet people; speak with them; create a connection and then see the impact it has on your results. Trust me the benefits are worth it.
And if you’re worrying about what you will say, which was the case with one leader I coached, then just ask people questions, ask them what they are doing. People love it when you show an interested in them and what they are doing. Once my client tried that he spent 80% of the time just listening to his team, he let them do the connecting, and just from that we saw results improve.
So go on get out there, what do you have to lose?
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