Monday, February 2, 2015

Smile, It’s Monday: Your Weekly Wake-up Call to Become a More Effective Leader

If you suspect a man, 
don’t employ him,
and if you employ him,
don’t suspect him.
--- Chinese proverb

I have spent over twenty years helping leaders let go of the controlling instincts that yield micro-management and waning employee morale. I’ve observed the devastating effects of our controlling natures on our personal lives: our need for everything to be just the way we like it is the mold with which the keys to our prison cells—in which there is hardly a moment where we are not either working or thinking of work—are cast.

The transformational dialogue that will result in your employees effectively doing the work you want them to do (the primary goal of managing people) is not about handling them, but inspiring their hearts and challenging their minds. In other words, it’s less about being a ‘manager’ and more about being a partner and mentor.

One of the most effective ways to make the shift from transactional to transformational interactions is to add the word “feel” to any question. The next time you are about to ask, “Did you finish the report you were working on?” instead try asking, “How did you feel about the report you were working on?”

Why does this work? Because feelings enable us to make a heart connection—the precursor of transformation.

This week, design at least one strategy to loosen the reins of control, tear down the walls of your self-created prison, and reclaim your life.


Anthony Silard is the president of The Global Leadership Institute and the author of the Simon & Schuster book The Connection: Link Your Passion, Purpose, and Actions to Make a Difference in the World. To receive Smile, It's Monday each week in your inbox and a free copy of Anthony's new audio CD, "The Surprising Source of Your Passion", enter your email here (1-step only).