One of the best aspects of a new year is that we often see it as an opportunity for a fresh start; a chance to recommit ourselves to those things we deem important – resolutions representing a whole host of worthy behaviors and plans.
This year, I’d like to suggest something for leaders. Something incredibly worthwhile. Something exceptionally hard to perfect. Something that needs focus. Something extreme.
“What if” we recommit ourselves to the people we lead by renewing our relationships with them? That’s no small task – building stronger, healthier, more productive working relationships. But those relationships will determine our eventual success. So why not make it a point of emphasis – greater understanding of one another, mutual appreciation, and unity.
Couldn’t that pay some nice dividends?
The other option is to just to let things slide, and go along as they are (which doesn’t sound much like progress, or improvement, to me).
This May Be Our Biggest Leadership Challenge?
When I was collecting the thoughts of leaders on their most difficult challenges, one wrote, “I’m two months into a new job and the people are my challenge. I used to have plenty of enthusiasm, but this time I just want to do my own work, and then go home. I fight myself more and more just to care enough about the others around me. I don’t like feeling this way.”
I’m sure she’s not alone.
Over time, many of us have gotten too busy with our work to pay much attention to people. We’ve lost touch in some ways.
Admittedly, people can be a struggle. Relationships take a lot of time. And energy. And don’t always go smoothly. But they’re a good goal – because it takes everyone to accomplish our agenda.
What I mean by, “It’s no time to be lazy,” is that now is the time to address our relational challenges – taking a positive, proactive approach. What better time than the New Year?
Yes, it’s going to take a lot of leadership on our part. (Maybe even swallowing a little pride.) But we must reach out if we’re going to reach new ups. Renewed relationships … they’re possible. And necessary.
Go to work, meet the challenge, and have a great New Year.
– Jerry Strom
For more information about our leadership and team development programs, please visit http://www.JerryStrom.com . Join the mailing list to receive new articles as they are published. This article is based on research conducted for the *‘The Relationships Report: The Linkage between Leadership and Relationships,’ by Jerry Strom & Company, Inc. Find ‘How Leaders Build Relationships at Work’ at http://www.jerrystrom.com/research/js_relationships.html and watch for short insights and quotes on Twitter at #RelationshipsRPT