Hi meaningful leader,
Welcome back, it’s nice to see you again!
As we’ve discussed many times before, team building is 100% relationship building. Authenticity is one of the most important attributes of successful leadership.
We discussed last week the importance of developing psychologically safe teams and the impact the company culture has in achieving it. But for this week, I’d like for us to dig deeper into the importance of creating a safe environment for the people around us. Not only for our teams, but for our families as well.
When our guard is up and we find ourselves in a constant state of fight-or-flight response, our cortisol levels are high, and our body is weakened by stress. Without diving into the tremendous toll that takes on the body, it’s easy to assess that all engagement and flow of creativity go out the door, as we are solely operating in survival mode.
Conversely, when the environment around us is perceived as positive and safe, it creates a conduit that helps to promote collaboration, brainstorming of ideas, pleasant interactions and inevitably, higher productivity and efficiency.
Needless to say, building a company culture that reflects the latter promotes psychological safety. However, it’s critical to keep in mind that any new variables introduced, can impact culture. If we recruit the wrong talent, it’ll impact the team negatively and shift the perceived safety of the group towards alert; whilst by hiring the right talent (based on aligned core values), the potential of the team will flourish. As stated last week, the culture is determined by the worse behavior leadership is willing to tolerate.
Thus, the risk of winging-it when it comes to talent retention and talent acquisition is huge. The glue that holds together a team is trust, and trust is built when we consistently show up for the team and have their back. When we conduct ourselves with integrity and our words match our actions. When we operate ethically under all circumstances, because it’s who we are. When we are honest and transparent and are willing to have the difficult conversations and address the spiky topics, because the well-being of the team trumps our own comfort.
And when we discuss leadership, we tend to focus all the emphasis at work, but our leadership role at home is the one that’s truly unreplaceable. Learning to honor the people we love and showing up for them, building them up, and cheering them on, should be set up as our main priority. Remember that as we grow personally, in parallel, our professional life gets better equipped for the job.
Not because our homelife doesn’t have a monetary compensation attached to it, should be considered less important. How sad it is when a leader is adored among his or her colleagues yet is a stranger among his or her own?
No professional achievement is worth leaving the ones we love behind. When I mentor younger female professionals, I always remind them that in the long run, anyone can do their job, but only they can be their parents’ daughter, their husband’s wife, or their children’s mother. Creating the right environment for them matter tremendously.
Authentically showing up for the ones closest to us will help us grow into the resilient and reliable leaders our teams will learn to rely on and follow. People follow people they trust, expecting the team to follow a title is unsustainable. Authentic leaders walk the talk. They are the same person at home and at work, they don’t play a character, depending on the audience in front of them. They are caring, reliable and trustworthy and that promotes the safety the team requires to perform at their best.
Thanks for reading and God bless,