Getting the basics right is fundamental to being a respected leader. Do you say these five things everyday?
I am amazed at the number of leaders that do not greet their staff everyday. When I have run focus groups with employees, time and time again, I have heard employees say that their manager does not greet them in the morning, even though they share the some office (and sometimes sit 2 metres away!). The employees say they feel ignored and not respected as their manager overlooked this simple act of human connection.
A simple “Good morning” acknowledges your colleagues, wishes them well for the day, does not take loads of time out of your day and let’s the people around you know that you appreciate them being there.
Yes, you are the boss. Yes, people have to do things just because you asked them. When you forget to say “please” you are giving them an order and reminding them of the power difference in your relationship. But, they already know that you are the boss and there is a power difference.
Sometimes managers confuse saying “please” with begging. Saying please to a colleague acknowledges that their emotional energy, commitment and respect are theirs to give. It’s also good manners. Begging is begging.
I have heard loads of managers say, “why should I say thank you to someone for doing their job?” If coming to work was all about a transaction of wages and employee outputs then they have a good point. However, as we have not yet been replaced by robots, then saying “thank you” acknowledges the human effort that went into the task.
Again – just good manners.
Own it. We all make mistakes. Everyday. This is the hardest of the 5 as this requires us to swallow our pride. Gulp. Yet the power of a sincere apology is immense in healing hurts, creating connection, building trust and gaining respect.
Like saying “hello”, saying “goodbye” is an important daily ritual. We bless the other person’s going and coming, wishing that they may be well while away. What a great way to end the day. Leaving before your team, also sets a great example of work/life balance, too.
Great leaders set inspiring vision, grow talent, give feedback, …. but without these five these actions are pretty hollow because at the core of leadership is connecting as a human to another human.
Have you had a leader that didn’t do these 5 things? Did you respect them? Are there any you need to work on?
I learnt these magic 5 from a wise women. There is one for each finger. She said they were the 5 rules her family tried to live by. Why not try these habits at home, too.