“The man who gets the most satisfactory results is not always the man with the most brilliant single mind, but rather the man who can best coordinate the brains and talents of his associates.”–Sir William Alton Jones
We have all heard a manager joke to employees saying “Do what I say, not what I do”. Managing by modeling the behavior we need is often the first step in Great Leadership and it is one of the hardest. Today’s managers and business owners often feel overworked and harried by all the things they need to do and sometimes tempers can flare. Modeling the behavior you want means more than just smiling and being polite, it requires us to honestly assess and change – really hard things but awesome if you want to move beyond mediocre. “Practice What You Preach” can mean we can train and be trained, be a team player not always the team leader, and model continuous improvement. What else can help? Here are places to start:
Teamwork: If we want people to be part of our team, we need to provide time and support of the teams we lead and support. Most managers desire staff and work groups to work together, yet some of these same managers will gossip about, put down or not support peers or other departments. This will often foster an attitude of “us” versus “them”.
Timely: If we want our employees and peers to be on time, we need to be on time ourselves. Years ago, I was part of team project consisting of managers of similar programs. We were charged with creating an event to support a local cause. After the first meeting, we all knew who was the default leader, the person that was late, but no one would start without her there. If we want people on to for meetings specifically, they must start on time if a key person is not available, rescheduling should be an option.
Focus: If our team members are constantly interrupted by digital media (texting, ring tones, tablets and more), being the team leader you will set the expectation of what will and will not be acceptable. Texting or answering a cell phone while in a meeting often says “you at this meeting are not as important as this person on the other end of my device”.
Beyond our place of work we can make an impact for if we want our neighborhood litter free, we know not to litter. Beyond not littering, many neighborhoods have discovered that it usually only takes one business or property owner to clean beyond their own door steps and eventually, others join in the beautification project. Savvy Business Owners know if you don’t have the time to practice what you preach, you don’t believe it yourself! Spread your core values and watch your business grow.