Every time I sit down to write for this blog, I think about what I can say that might give value to you. This value becomes the basis for the relationship you and I have as writer and reader.
It isn’t always easy. I struggle with having time to write when I have a busy work and family life. And like almost any writer there are times when the words come easily and other times when I struggle with the topic, the explanation, or the story I want to tell. Sometimes the perfect storm hits and I struggle with all of it.
In your work as a leader you’re at your best when you’re providing value to your organization (by getting the results that are expected) and to the people you interact with to achieve those results (through the relationships you have with them). It can be a struggle, but it’s one that pays off.
I repeat: the relationships you have with those you lead are foundational to the results you will achieve. Value is the common currency that flows between healthy relationships.
You will give value to others when you:
Take care of yourself first. When you take care of yourself you will be at your best for those you lead. When you give everything to your work – as so many leaders I know – you might find that you run out of energy reserves at some point, which can impact your performance. We’re meant to stay healthy by putting attention to many areas in our lives. Check in with your physical, emotional, and spiritual needs to make sure they’re met. If you feel healthy in all areas you’ll find that giving value to others is possible.
Give them your focused attention. It seems a simple thing to be attentive and present to others, but you may find yourself struggling with distraction or energy drain when you do. It takes practice and persistence. You’ll provide the most value to others when you listen deeply and stay present. It’s a gift to those you lead when you can provide even the smallest amount of focused attention to them on a regular basis, and it benefits you and the organization as well.
Show them you care. It’s perfectly okay – in fact it’s right – to show that you care about others at work. If you focus on the good in others, you can forget about what bothers you about them, dropping the obstacles between you, making it easier to show you care. Work results are impacted by the things employees bring into the workplace from other parts of their lives. Showing kindness and compassion to those you work with when they’re struggling with any part of living or working (even when they aren’t) will help them to move on and be more productive at work.
Help them to break through barriers. Sometimes barriers are external and sometimes they are inside of us. Notice what keeps people around you stuck. Help them to bust through the barriers that keep them in place. You’ll find that your mentoring and coaching can help them to release their potential to become more than they (and you) imagined.
Results don’t happen without strong relationships. As a leader your job is to give value to others, enhancing the relationships you have. Results will follow.
What are you doing to give more value to others?