Healthy team performance begins with healthy leader performance. Healthy leaders lead from the inside-out, making personal changes and improvements before asking their teams to do the same. The power of role modeling is true in every aspect of life. Children mimic their parents’ values, behaviors, and habits… and employees do the same. It has been and always will be that way. This is as deeply imbedded at work as it is at home.
In our work with clients, we occasionally see leaders take an outside-in approach—they attempt to change their teams before changing themselves. For example, they tell their teams to be more focused, and yet they are not focused as leaders. Although an outside-in approach can produce short-term results, it will rarely, if ever, produce long-term, sustained change.
In fact, most organizational change efforts fail within the first 18 months for exactly this reason—leaders take an outside-in approach to change. This yields compliance rather than commitment from their teams. And behavior change for the sake of compliance is rarely “owned” as deeply as we need to sustain healthy growth.
We must first master ourselves before we can master the healthy leadership of others. Every action you take is like a pebble tossed into a quiet pond. Your actions affect others’ actions, which create a ripple effect of reactions.
There are no neutral actions. Nearly everything you do has a positive or negative impact of some sort.
Next week, we will start a series of the values that healthy leaders lead and live by.
Take this complimentary, 2-minute Healthy Growth Check-up to help start your journey.