Leadership Key: Understanding the Other Person


In my view, the real secret of good leadership is that it it grounded in a deep and objective understanding of the people with whom you are working and leading. Doing this creates a nurturing culture in any organization. It does this as the leader constantly strives to uphold the uniqueness, dignity and possibility of each employee within their team and organization.

This focus in turn releases a creativity and energy. The organization or team is energized to move forward, to improve and to make quality decisions because people are held in high regard. There’s a can-do attitude that pervades the team and, because individual dignity is a priority, failure is part of the growth process. In fact, many such teams welcome failure as part of the process. No one is condemned, rather the failure is used to catapult the organization or team to new levels of creativity and growth as the learning experience is applied.

Unfortunately, too many people work in cultures that don’t value uniqueness and dignity. The leaders in these units either want robots who only do the job given, or there’s a spirit of cynicism about people that spreads like an ugly stain into every team meeting and presentation. When work is just a factor of production and people are not valued, creativity within the organization suffers.

How about you. Do you truly value each individual on your team? Do you know their strengths? temperament? Goals? Dreams? Or, are they just part of the process? Do you think creativity could be improved? If you do, are you willing to understand your people and how you can help them achieve what they need?



2 Responses to “Leadership Key: Understanding the Other Person”

  1. Uniqueness and dignity. I love those words in this context, Wayne. You don’t hear them or see them honored in many places. As a creative, who has worked for giants such as The Walt Disney Company, when these two areas lack or decline, productivity and profits follow suit. Smart leaders (companies) will honor the individual as the turnkey (secret sauce) to achieving their overarching goals.

    As an employer, the same applies. In the race to perform & deliver daily, however, the focus can easily sway to the left or to the right and somehow the hearts/people behind the task appear to be “the problem” rather than the very solution we are striving for. I will be looking at my team of heartbeats with extra care today. To commend (even in failure) is the higher, more dignified leadership model. To condemn as part of your leadership = longterm organizational failure.

    What a great reminder for anyone in a place of influence and leadership! Thanks, Wayne!

    • Wayne says:

      Thanks, Toni. God made us individually and uniquely. When we honor that, great things happen. I appreciate your thoughts so much.

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