Gary* always said thank you when I delivered something that I had promised him. Whether it was a simple report or a complex recommendation, it did not matter. He always made sure to thank me, not just in a cursory way, but to make sure that I had really received his appreciation for my work.
Even if there was something that he wanted to change, it was easy to address it because of his acknowledgement and appreciation. I recall going away glowing with the gratitude that he had given me and of course, would always go the extra mile for him. He was a great role model for me of a leader who truly appreciated people.
Game-changing leaders treat people with respect and give them the appreciation we all crave. It is not all about being nice either. They believe in the capability of their people and expect a big game from them. They appreciate them for who they really are and don’t let them get away with anything less. It makes a huge difference.
We call this the ‘service’ stage on the influence curve, where leaders multiply their influence through shifting their focus to those around them.
The idea of ‘servant leadership’ is an ancient one that was brought to life in the seminal book, The Power of Servant Leadership by Robert Greenleaf. He realised that organisations that thrived, had leaders who acted more as supportive coaches serving both the needs of employees and the organisation. As he puts it, “A servant-leader focuses primarily on the growth and well-being of people and the communities to which they belong. While traditional leadership generally involves the accumulation and exercise of power by one at the “top of the pyramid,” servant leadership is different. The servant-leader shares power, puts the needs of others first and helps people develop and perform as highly as possible.”
Are you serving people around you?
Best regards, Brian
*Name changed to protect the innocent
PS: Want to take your leadership to a new level? Contact us for a free 30 minute leadership diagnostic.