A good leader of people is one who gets that each member of his/her team is different. They are uniquely wired and what motivates and galvanises one person into action will not be the same hot buttons to press as with another. An effective leader takes the time to understand their role as leader, the internal drivers of the individual – what underpins their beliefs and values, the life experiences that have shaped them, the vision they have for their lives and the legacy they would like to leave behind.
Help Them To Build And Colour In Their Talent Profile
All these things are important in forming, shaping and managing talent in a team. As a leader you need to take this intelligence and help individuals use your leadership to build onto and breathe into their Talent Profile. A TP is a living, multimedia document. A new form of CV that goes beyond a typed document on a piece of paper. When individuals feel that their experiences within an organisation or within a business relationship are growing them and helping them to colour in their Talent Profile, they stay for a while longer, whether that means for another six months or six years, who knows.
If you are a leader of people and you are able to help your team find ways to enhance their Talent Profile, you will also be enhancing yours and gaining a great deal of satisfaction in the process. You will be becoming a Journeyman by journeying with your team. This is a very different concept to lording it over they as their leader using power over or against them. It’s about re-framing your leadership role as power with or power together which speaks to the old adage of collaboration: together we can do more. Not just more for the business, but more for each other too and there is a sharp distinction here to traditional leadership. You have more chance of attracting, developing and retaining talent in this way because you are not just process-focused but people-focused too. You are acutely conscious of the need to always be connecting or you will likely experience the disconnect. It is this feeling of being disconnected, lacking of a sense of belonging, and having no sense of personal meaning at work, that are cited as major reasons for people being unhappy at work and leaving their jobs.
Be A Human Being Not Just a Human Doing
Let’s wake up to the fact that it is ever more important to be a human being not just a human doing in this crazy warp-speed world where we are actually seeking deeper connection with each other and searching for meaning beyond a pay cheque. While a salary is essential to pay for the cost of living, people are thinking twice about what they are exchanging their time, energy and expertise for today. Many will also have side hustles (interests, hobbies or even other jobs on the side) that make them happy or bring in another stream of income. Get to know what those things are. You may even find that apart from getting to know another dimension of your team member, what they do on the side may be useful in some way, shape of form to your team or your company.
Take aways for winning at work:
- Get to know each member of your team so that you know how to motivate them, this is no longer a one size fits all world.
- Let them get to know the real you, not just the professional you.
- Introduce each member of your team to the Talent Profile concept – it will make you a hero.
- Find a piece of their Talent Profile that is missing or needs enhancing and see how you can work together to create it.
- Look at your own Talent Profile and see what is missing or needs enhancing and utilise your team to fill in the gap.
- Subscribe to an ‘I help you win, you help me win’ philosophy.
- Help each other to create lives of meaning or meaningful journeys at work.
Take aways for winning at life and home:
- People who have found meaning and purpose at work are happier at home.
- People who feel their work has meaning are more focused when they are both at home and at work
- Levels of engagement rise – they are more present wherever they are
- One’s Happiness Quotient cannot help but increase
- Physical health improves and absenteeism decreases
- Mental health and depression improve including Sunday Blues
- Relationships with partners, spouses and children improve.
- Better ability to role model healthy personal leadership at home.
Leadership Is Not A One Size Fits All
Don’t treat your team members as a homogenous group of ‘same’. They are not. And they want to be seen as the individuals they are. Help them to:
- Define their own goals
- Build their Talent Profile
- Add to their Talent Profile – I call this colouring in your Talent Profile
- Understand what motivates them
- Define their strengths and interests in pursuit of understanding their own unique essence beyond their current job description
Be A Cup Filler
This is an investment in the success not just of your team but in you as an individual and a leader. It will make your own role as a leader so much more satisfying. You will get feedback that inspires you to keep going. It will fill your cup. No leader can function with an empty cup. By being a cup filler you will be creating a constant stream of feedback to fill yours too.
Human Potential and Parenting Expert, speaker and author: Helping you win at work and life