In a recent article by the Harvard Business Review, leaders were advised to pay more attention to their team’s assets and less on their own power within the organization.
“By focusing too much on control and end goals, and not enough on their people, leaders are making it more difficult to achieve their own desired outcomes,” the piece said.
What’s the better alternative? Empowering employees and encouraging their work.
To do this, leaders should take a more personal approach, acting as a conduit to professional growth and providing support for their team when necessary.
In short? Be humble. Instead of assuming the role as the almighty-boss, create an office culture that fosters communication and learning. Acknowledge, both in your actions and your words, that you aren’t all-knowing, and that the team is full of strong workers, each with their own set of skills and expertise.
Not only does this elicit a feeling of mutual respect between the leader and their staff, it also gives the staff the much-needed space to be creative and own their work.
When a company head in China implemented this “people-first” method, he met with his employees in small groups to find out how he could help make the company better. These conversations led to big ideas the leader had never even considered, and customer satisfaction rose by 54 percent.
Try adding a little humility into your leadership routine. The results might surprise you.
For more on humble leadership, read “How Humble Leadership Really Works,” by Dan Cable, in Harvard Business Review.