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July 8, 2014

Se7en Deadly Sins Blog Post Series: Sin #4 Detachment

sin 4

It sounds so simple. Employees follow leaders because of how leaders make them feel.

Leadership is personal, but in their focus on business goals, leaders often detach themselves from the human element of the workplace, thereby failing to show they care about their team members.

Is Detachment a sin you’re guilty of? Ask yourself how well you know your team. What are they passionate about? What are the little things that matter to them? When are their birthdays? When was the last time you interacted with them as people, not simply as your employees? When was the last time you said thank you?

By engaging with team members and employees, leaders have the power to boost morale, engagement, and excitement.  Studies have shown that motivated and involved teams are measurably more productive and successful than disengaged teams. People won’t listen to you until they know who you are and that you care.

Leadership IS Personal¹

As a leader, how do you get people to follow?  Work to elicit one of the three emotional responses:

  • The feeling of significance: People want to feel valued and know that they really matter—no matter how they contribute to an organization. Feeling significant leads to loyalty.             
  • The feeling of community: Community occurs when people feel a sense of purpose around work and feel a part of something larger than them.
  • The feeling of excitement: People want excitement and challenge in their lives. Energy from a leader keeps followers engaged and can inspire them to become leaders.

¹Harvard Business Review, “Followership: It’s Personal, Too,” (2001)

How do you make your team feel?  

-David Grossman

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