So it’s logical that employees want to “see” their leaders doing the right things. The old adages – ‘actions speak louder than words’ and ‘walk the talk’ are all too often expressed by many frustrated and disengaged employees about their leaders today.
So here’s the bottom line question – are your leaders living illustrations? Do employees learn the desired behaviors of your organization from watching their leaders? Here are eight critical factors where seeing can truly create believing.
- Accountability. Do they (employees) see leaders taking ownership of issues & problems and not blaming someone else?
- Change. Do they see leaders as active players making the required change or just spectators who watch and critique?
- Communication. Do they see leaders effectively asking questions, listening, generating understanding and not just talking, telling, and tuning-out?
- Handling differences of opinion. Do they see leaders finding common ground or only staking out their personal claims?
- Priorities. Do they see leaders respectfully saying no or not now, versus just adding more to the list of things to do?
- Respect. Do they see leaders giving it, in order to get it or just feeling entitled to it?
- Sacrifice. Do they see leaders going first, when sacrifices need to be made, or routinely being treated as an exception?
- Work/Life Harmony. Do they see leaders disconnecting from work and not staying electronically connected 24/7?
When employees at work don’t know what to do, what to think, or what to say – do leaders provide a living illustration? In high performance organizations leaders do – because we remember images and we forget words!