I had the privilege of hearing Chip Madera, renowned speaker and organizational development expert, speak again for the second time in one month. This past week, he talked to us about leadership and execution and his message really stuck with me. We were a bunch of healthcare leaders in the audience and if you know healthcare, you know that the industry is going through a boat-load of changes.
But, going through change is not a good excuse for not executing. Leaders need to be the example. As Chip puts it, we are the “keepers of the culture.” It starts with us and it is up to us to lead it. If we don’t get this right, we will not survive because “culture eats strategy for breakfast.” If we don’t keep the culture, our employees will create it anyway and it won’t be the culture we want because if we’re not part of it, they will know that pretty quickly.
We cannot continue blaming employees and trying to hold them accountable without first holding ourselves accountable. I constantly run into leaders who complain about their employees not performing but they never actually do anything about these employees. If we want A players, we need to pick A players, we need to grow A players and we need to be A players. Only when we start looking within ourselves can we start leading and executing for our teams and our organizations.
To lead a culture that people will follow and buy into, we need to connect with them. We need to be able to relate to them and to meet them where they are. As the workplace gets more chaotic and stress levels rise, leaders are challenged with channeling their emotions while maintaining operations and leading people. This is no small task but where leaders often fail is the people part. They begin to drown themselves in the day-to-day and neglect their teams.
Chip challenged us to “fall in love with our people again.” He didn’t mean this literally, of course, but we need to take a step back and remember that we chose to accept leadership positions and that decision comes with specific responsibilities to our people.
So, have you reflected about your leadership lately? What are you going to do to reignite your passion for people and execute, particularly the culture?
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