Disrespect seems to be running rampant everywhere, including our workplaces. Yet when a leader shows they respect their team, the benefits become obvious: people are motivated, dedicated, loyal and the leader becomes a talent magnet – the best workers want to work for and stay with that leader. All of those things make your life and leadership easier. Why wouldn’t you show respect?
Consider some ways (or all of them) that you can show respect to your team:
Listen: Listening is a sign of respect; when you listen well, others feel appreciated and heard, even if you don’t agree with them.
Ask don’t tell: Your team wants to come up with their own solutions. Instead of solving problems for them, ask how they would solve them; this demonstrates that you hold their ability to think through dilemmas in high regard.
Begin and end meetings on time: This might seem like a small thing, but when you stick with the time frames anticipated for a meeting, it shows respect for your team and their precious time.
Follow through: Making a commitment to your team is one thing. Following through on that commitment shows that you care for and respect them.
Being truthful: Don’t mince words! When you tell it like it is, your team members feel included. Telling them what they need to know is a sign that you trust their ability to handle the truth.
Being clear: When you’re clear about the direction of your organization, it tells your team that you know they can move ahead and do what’s needed to reach goals.
Treating people equally: It’s all too common for a leader to have favorites on the team. Treating people equally doesn’t mean you treat them the same. It means you don’t “play favorites” while treating everyone similarly, showing that you expect everyone’s best.
Invest in their development: You have a good team, why wouldn’t you help them to become great? It’s a way of honoring them when you help them to develop to become the best they can be.
Invite them into the conversation: When you are setting a new direction or starting a new project, inviting them into the conversation helps them to feel included and appreciated.
Tell them what they did right: So often, feedback is critical in nature. When you give your team positive feedback, they will feel respected for what they did and have confidence that they are on the correct path.
Stand out by being the leader who daily shows respect to their team. It’s good for you, good for the team, and great for the bottom line. What other things do you do daily that show respect for your team?
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Mary Jo Asmus is an executive/leadership coach whose work spans decades of making a difference in the lives of hundreds of executives, leaders and teams in Fortune 500, mid- and small- sized business, governments and nonprofits. She focuses on facilitating individuals and teams from first-line supervisor to the C-suite to create, develop, and influence the relationships that can make them extraordinary.