Real Leadership Is Power With People (Not Over Them)
Everything we accomplish happens not just because of our efforts but also through the efforts of others. The biggest difference between people who manage others versus people who lead others is how they develop those under them.
As all leaders know, untitled or not, leadership is power with people, not power over people. Do you build people up or tear them down? Encourage or discourage others? Try to be the hero, or make heroes out of those around you?
According to researcher Tom Rath at Gallup, the No.1 reason why people quit their jobs is lack of appreciation. Everyone wants to feel significant, to be recognized for what they do. It's important to make people feel appreciated. It's even more important to let people know there is someone who believes in them, so much so that he or she will not let them be less than they can be.
The 3 C's of Power with People:
- Character - Those who wish to influence others understand how important character is. When establishing character, it is critical to remember that the opposite of humility isn't pride; it is self-absorption. Few people can lead or inspire others, at work or at home, when they are self-absorbed.
- Competence - People who act as leaders exude competence - by their actions, by their appearances and in everything they undertake
- Connection - When we act effectively as leaders, those around us bond with us - not because of our position or title in the organization, but because of their relationship with us.
Once you've developed these 3C's in your relationship with others, you will be capable of leading. As a leader, titled or not, your job is to act as a thermostat, not as a thermometer. Industrialist Harvey Firestone said, "You get the best out of others when you give the best of yourself". So give it your best.
Leadership Action Points:
- Express your appreciation - To act like a leader, celebrate the success of those around and under you as if it were your own.
- Ask others what motivates them - When was the last time anyone asked you what motivates you? Don't make assumptions about what motivates your team either.
- Collaborate - When it comes to decision-making, the oft-used acronym TEAM is true: Together Everyone Accomplishes More.
- Practice diplomatic confrontation - Rather than confronting the person, consider what behavior of his or hers needs to change, Confront the problem, not the person.
Mark Sanborn, CSP, CPAE, is president of Sanborn & Associates, Inc., an idea studio dedicated to developing leaders in business and in life. Mark is an international best-selling author and noted authority on leadership, team-building, customer service and change. Mark is the author of 8 books, including the best seller The Fred Factor: How Passion in Your Work and Life Can Turn the Ordinary into the Extraordinary, which has sold more than 1.6 million copies internationally. Learn more about Mark at www.marksanborn.com.