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Enhancing Leadership Through the Power of Connection

In today’s fast-paced and ever-changing work environment, connecting with others on a human level has become increasingly important. As leaders, it is essential to demonstrate that your decisions prioritize your people as much as your financial goals. Doing that’s not easy: you must balance showing that you genuinely care about their needs with making tough decisions that financially serve the greater good. But by making the extra effort, you can foster a culture of mutual respect that drives productivity and success.

Here are some key reasons why striking the balance is crucial for your leadership.

Improved Communication

When leaders and managers communicate in ways that are in tune with their teams and colleagues, others see them as more effective and transparent. Transparency builds trust, and trust builds loyalty. By actively asking about and listening to others’ perspectives and concerns, you can better understand how you can best meet their needs.

Enhanced Teamwork

When you meet your team members’ needs, you get more of what you need, too. When team members feel valued and supported, they are more likely to engage in pro-social organizational behaviors including sharing ideas for improving quality and productivity and working with you towards shared goals. Our research shows how this is true.

Increased Engagement

Showing genuine interest and empathy towards your employees can significantly impact their engagement and commitment to their work. When employees feel valued and appreciated, they are more motivated to contribute their best efforts and go the extra mile. Our latest research demonstrates how this works and how a lack of your interpersonal interest and empathy can derail your organization’s success.

Better Problem-Solving

Through the power of connection, you are better able to leverage diverse perspectives so that teams can develop more innovative solutions to complex problems. When leaders and managers actively involve others in decision-making input, they tap into a wealth of knowledge and expertise that drives better outcomes.

Strengthened Relationships

The number one resource for resilience amidst today’s workplace stressors is positive relationships. The connection-building you gain by genuinely caring about others’ perspectives fosters stronger relationships with your peers, superiors, and direct reports. It cultivates a more supportive and inclusive work environment. These stronger relationships can withstand challenges and setbacks, leading to greater team resilience and cohesion.

So, how can leaders show they prioritize genuine interest and care and business objectives?

Practice Active Listening

Take the time to listen attentively to others’ perspectives and concerns without judgment or interruption. If you are inclined to interrupt others when they speak, be mindful that your interruption conveys “What I have to say is more important to me than what you have to say.” Instead of interrupting, think, “By letting them talk, I can discover what they care about and what motivates them.” When they turn the conversation back to you, show genuine interest in what they said by asking a question to be sure you understand their point of view.

Demonstrate Empathy

Empathy is not feeling sorry for someone or putting yourself in their shoes. Empathy is action. It requires that you first intellectually understand things from another’s perspective, then resonate with their feelings, and then do what makes things better for them. That will also make things better for you in the long run.

Lead by Example

Model the behaviors and values you wish to see in others. If you want others to care about the things you do, you must first show that you care about what is important to them. Doing that sets a positive example for others to follow.

Invest in Relationship-Building

By doing the things above, you will naturally build trust-based connections. It’s just that simple, though it isn’t always easy.

Would you like to embed the power of connection into your daily leadership practices? Engage Dr. Betty Johnson to speak to your organization. Book a 15-minute discovery call today.

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