What’s Love Got to do with Leadership?
What is the most important attribute of a good leader? While it is difficult to single out one overarching attribute, according to leadership author, Lolly Daskal, “The single most important factor that differentiates a good leader from a great leader is LOVE.” Truly exceptional leaders know how to lead with love. One of the main reasons for this is that love brings out the best in people, no matter the situation.
If you are a leader looking to get the most out of the people you lead, then learn to love them. Here is how you can lead with love.
Lead with Encouragement, Not Criticism
When someone is struggling, give him or her hope by offering encouragement and support. People will make mistakes, as no one is perfect. Rather than criticize, leaders who love take advantage of these moments to teach and train. This makes a huge difference in helping people learn from their mistakes, improve their performance, and succeed.
Show love with words or acts of appreciation whenever possible. A “Way to go” email, treating them to lunch, praising them privately or in front of others, or giving them a raise are all ways to let them know you appreciate their hard work. Appreciation is a powerful form of positive reinforcement which results in the desire to repeat the pattern of hard work=reward.
Be Flexible and Empathetic
It is important to set expectations and be prepared to enforce them. However, those who lead with love also show empathy when someone falls short of those expectations. They understand life is unpredictable, everyone has bad days, and the weather answers to no one. Flexibility is key in such situations and where encouragement comes in handy.
Leaders who love have learned how to truly listen and are open to ideas and suggestions from those they lead. They know when they show willingness to keep growing and learning from those they lead, everyone feels heard and understood.
Teach, don’t Criticize
People will make mistakes, as no one is perfect. Rather than criticize, leaders who love take advantage of these moments to teach and train. This makes a huge difference in helping people learn from their mistakes, allowing them to improve their performance and succeed.
Show You Care
Leading with love means showing you care about their success and what drives them, “what inspires and empowers” them, in the words of Lolly Daskal. Far too many leaders pretend to care. Show that you are genuine and sincere by getting to know those you lead, follow up with anyone who has expressed a difficulty and do what you can to help them professionally, and even in their personal life.
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This transcript was generated by software and may not accurately reflect exactly what was said.
Alan Olsen, is the Host of the American Dreams Show and the Managing Partner of GROCO.com. GROCO is a premier family office and tax advisory firm located in the San Francisco Bay area serving clients all over the world.
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