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The Ego ContinuumSAMPLE

and struggle to find the

and struggle to find the right people. They continuously hire just to have people leave in 3 months’ time because the work environment feels toxic. Suddenly, there’s no one left to hire, or their reputation will stop great staff from applying. These companies end up having to take people on that they wouldn’t normally choose, who are then entrusted to support your valuable, paying customers. Furthermore, if you do stay long enough to be promoted into a leadership role, you’re expected to direct these typically challenging-to-manage people without having any supervisory training yourself! It creates a toxic, repetitive culture where nothing ever changes. You won’t find much autonomy in these companies. The agents don’t feel empowered to do what’s right. Rather, if they do take some initiative, they would probably not receive the required support or guidance because there’s little to no effective communication. You can avoid all this by simply putting your staff first. Yes, without your customers you don’t have a business, but without your employees, you have nobody to manage the customer! The employee is just as important as the client, if not, dare I say it, more important. You need to embrace your staff, find out what motivates them both intrinsically and extrinsically. The team managers should have the autonomy to genuinely focus on their people. The company should make the individuals and feedback their priority. Sometimes, companies seem to have it backwards: their primary focus is on their bottom line instead of their people. Of course, some would argue that profitability is the most important factor and, in some instances, I don’t disagree. Most organisations look at the cost of doing service. They look at customer satisfaction (CSAT) and the proportion of dissatisfied customers (DSAT). There is no arguing that profits are necessary. 12 the ego continuum

However, to maintain those profits and seek a long-term costreduction initiative can be directly linked to the sustainability of an effective and actively led workforce. Companies don’t take their approach to a deep enough level, which is employee satisfaction (ESAT.) What supportive leadership brand do employers use to support their leaders to be better leaders? How deep do they choose to take the approach and create an embedded environment, where shitty leadership is simply not acceptable? Do they have the right tools to do the job effectively? If we create a culture of active leadership, everything simplifies as a natural consequence. Right now, most businesses have to focus on bringing eighty percent of their staff up to scratch, while the top twenty percent carry the company. What if we reverse that? Why can’t eighty percent of the staff do everything they should be, instead of needing constant reminders of how to demonstrate productive behaviours. When you work with or for someone that you respect and admire, it is normal for you to want to do your best for that person. Actively lead eight out of your ten staff so that they choose to respect and support you. Make it so that they feel as if you care about them and that they are valued so that when they have a bad customer experience, it won’t be the end of the world. Give specific attention to each one of those eight staff on what they need for them to feel engaged and supported in their role. This way they will know their manager has their back, and that if they need a five-minute vent, they can do so without fear of repercussion. Sometimes we just have a bad moment and need reassurance that everything will be okay. When we practice active leadership, we don’t focus on the mundane. We don’t focus on what’s unimportant. We don’t overcomplicate situations or concentrate on the drama. We do recall that there is a human being behind every issue. This human has Introduction 13

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