Mark Craemer No Comments

In my work with organizations both as an employee and external consultant, I have learned (and continue to learn) many things over the years. Many of these have evolved or been entirely reversed, which is indicative of the fact that we are living at a very dynamic time.

For example, in a recent article in Harvard Business Review magazine, Michael J. Mauboussin writes about how organizations are so often using the wrong metrics to measure success. The continual focus on earnings per share instead of other metrics and statistics prevents these companies from fully understanding their business. It’s time for business leaders to adapt their thinking.

In this blog post, I thought I would simply state some of what I believe with regard to the workplace and leadership. Although these statements are likely to continue evolving over time, I believe they will retain a kernel of truth that should remain constant.

I am indebted to many great business leaders and theorists for these ideas and I apologize in advance for a lack of attribution.

  • Most people want to do their very best at work.
  • More autonomy for how the work gets done leads to greater employee satisfaction and higher productivity.
  • Great companies don’t hire skilled people and motivate them. They hire motivated people and inspire them.
  • Character traits like zest, grit, self-control, social intelligence, gratitude, optimism and curiosity are common among great employees, yet are rarely advertised for or even looked for when seeking and interviewing candidates.
  • Emotional intelligence may not get you the job, but it will undoubtedly keep you in the job and help you get promoted.
  • Getting the right people focused on the right task is the most important objective for any organization to reach its goals.
  • Focusing on employees first is what will make customers happy and this leads to happy shareholders.
  • The role of a great leader is not to come up with great ideas. Instead, a great leader should create an environment in which great ideas can happen.
  • Everyone has the capacity for leadership no matter the position.
  • Leadership development should not be restricted to executives, but implemented throughout every level of the organization.
  • Most of the billions of dollars companies invest in leadership development fall short of success because the programs are so heavily focused on data and assessment gathering and very little on people and processes.
  • A high level of trust in the workplace is directly related to greater productivity, higher profitability and more engaged employees.
  • Building trust and accountability are the most important things a manager should work on in order to get the most out his or her people.
  • Praising workers in a meaningful way is a simple, yet highly effective means of raising employee satisfaction and overall productivity.

I welcome your thoughts and comments as well as other statements with regard to what you believe in order to extend the conversation.

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