Leadership for Life – R-E-S-P-E-C-T

By on November 1, 2012
Workplace Respect

Our Leadership experts will be sharing tips and insights for everyone, at any station in life, at both home and work. Leadership for Life – the skills you embrace represent who you really are at all times.

If you want to be great leader, you need to follow the advice of Aretha Franklin and show some RESPECT to those whom you work with, and not simply demand it from them. If you want mutual respect to flourish, you need to give as well as get.

We know that everyone wants to feel valued and respected. It’s a primary human need. This means that, as a leader, you need to be aware of how others are feeling and understand the impact you’re having on them. Here, in no particular order, are some suggestions for how to show the proper respect to those whom you lead:

  • Invite them to participate in decisions that will affect them. Even when the decision is clearly a leadership prerogative, allow people to participate in the discussions that lead up to that decision, and exchange your thoughts, feelings, and rationale for the decision.
  • You probably hate it when people are late for meetings. You can respect your people by being on time yourself, not keeping them waiting because you think your time is more valuable than theirs.
  • If you’ve been preaching the virtues of innovation, don’t punish people for failure. You probably already know that if they don’t fail, they’re not trying hard enough. After a failure, your job is commiserate and coach, not punish.
  • Communicate! Tell people what’s going on – good news and bad. We have so many channels for communication – email, LinkedIn, Skype, Intranets, etc. – there’s no really good reason not to keep people in the loop.
  • Support your people, but don’t relieve them of their proper responsibilities. Sure, it may save some time in the short term to shove people aside and do their jobs for them, but training and coaching them achieves more in the long run, and shows that you respect their ability to learn and change.

This is by no means a definitive list, but it is a good start in helping your people to feel more valued and respected. If you want more, check out some of my podcasts on other leadership topics: http://www.stlcc.edu/Podcasts/business-training/index.html.

About Barry Schapiro

Barry is the Workforce Solutions Group Practice Leader for Leadership and Professional Development. His experience includes delivery and management of business training in a variety of industries, with specialties in leadership, team development, generational diversity, and customer service. Twitter

You must be logged in to post a comment Login