S2 E4 Fear In Leadership, how to be an affective leader
Welcome to today's podcast, where we delve into the world of leadership and discuss how to effectively manage people. Melissa from conciergeelite.com, shares her insights on the differences between managing and leading, and the importance of emotional intelligence (EQ) in being a successful leader.
Melissa discusses the importance of admitting mistakes as a leader and offers four reasons why leaders should accept when they make mistakes. She also touches on the value of vulnerability in strengthening the team and building trust between leaders and their employees.
Emotional intelligence is a critical factor in being an effective leader. It allows us to identify and understand our own emotions, as well as those of others. By gaining a deeper understanding of our emotions, we can work to conquer our weaknesses and become more self-aware.
Join us as we explore the role of emotional intelligence in leadership and learn how to effectively manage people in today's podcast.
00:08 Melissa Today's podcast is brought to you by.
00:09 Melissa Concierge Elite. Concierge Elite provides dedicated remote front desk staff and virtual assistants to your office. We specialize in finding your office the perfect and right fit for your office and your office only full or part time. Your remote team member is just that yours. We do all the hiring, the recruiting and training. Yes, the training. It's one of the things that makes us unique as we train your dedicated remote team member in your systems and software.
00:38 Melissa Great leaders invest in people. Investing others creates margin and return at no hidden cost. Hi. I'm Melissa Brown with understaffed. Today starts a very special three part series in which we talk about leadership. No matter what walk of life you're in position, you hold, or where you're going, this is for you. See, you can never go at leadership alone. Unfortunately, too many leaders allow their egos and hidden agendas to stand in the way of what they do best for their people and their organizations they serve. Leaders are sometimes responsible for being right. However, they are accountable for seeing that problems become opportunities and ultimately those opportunities become solutions. They should know the subject matter. They should be the subject matter experts on their team and they should empower their team during times of crisis and change. But this is a big one. The reason why over 98% of the population fails to invest in people is due to one thing and one thing only fear.
01:41 Melissa See, investing in people, helping them grow and improve and be good at what they're good at and what they're passionate about. It's a two way process. Leaders try to empower and guide their people to who in return work to serve and to ensure that the company succeeds. Let me say that again. It's a two way process. Leaders empower and guide their people, who in return work hard to ensure the company succeeds. Investing and building trust in your team members is something that only the best leaders can do. It's unique to each leader and it's totally impossible to replicate it the same way each time. Every employee will be different. The way that you lead them, the way that you invest in them will be completely unique to each and every one of them. Great leaders realize the value of their team and that team is the value of who they are.
02:43 Melissa Now, as a leader, you should always give more than you take. When you do that, those people can expand your vision. Ultimately that unselfish nature allows us to focus on something other than ourselves. That's the key point here. As a result, great leaders create a leadership culture. Through that investment, they model the behavior that builds relationships. And that relationships fuel achievement. Great people and not so great people are going to be revealed in the process. You're only going to truly know that once you invest. Now, any great leader is going to tell you that they've made mistakes and matter of fact you're going to hear some of my mistakes that I've made as a leader in subsequent series. I can admit, and so will they that there's some collective insight from the bad decisions and they taught us valuable lessons. We've got to see how opportunities are within those lessons and then how can we anticipate the unexpected even more quickly next time.
03:51 Melissa Successful leaders are transparent enough with themselves and others to admit their wrongdoings so that everybody around them can benefit from those learnings. They call this wisdom and many leaders well, they lack it because they're too proud to recognize mistakes as valuable learning moments for themselves and others. Again it boils down to fear managing mistakes. It's much like leading change management. Everyone's searching for clarity and they want to understand. They want to minimize risk and they want to discover change short term and long term. Because of that there's short term and longterm rewards. Sometimes we focus so much on maximizing our strengths but not enough on understanding how and why we fail. This is so equally essential to success. We've got to look at both ends of the coin. Becoming the most influential leader that you possibly can requires us to take responsibility. We have to take responsibility for dissecting the why and the how of our successes and our failures.
05:07 Melissa See you see what happens when a leader's insecurity and fear takes over. They shut down. They can get defensive, they can lash out. Anger or even depression can take over. They could give up. They push people away or abuse their power or abuse the people that they need most. In short, it's terrible leadership. I want to challenge you to look, let's think of a circle, a circular vision and evaluate the dynamics that we deal with daily. The things that exist around, beneath and beyond what we seek to create. The impact, the influence of our leadership role. This 360 approach really gives us a widened view to see things more clearly and provides us with a different perspective that sometimes we ignore when we're looking straight down the road. Again, we spend a lot of time here on the idea of the why and the how.
06:13 Melissa Why did something happen and how do we move forward? This ultimately teaches us to lead more effectively and how we can do that towards more sustainable outcomes. Not short term but longer term. Now when fear dominates our leadership you can't serve your team well. They're more likely to make poor decisions. I want to give you a few tips today on how you can manage your fear. Before I do I want to create a better distinction between managing and leading. Now while they may sound very similar you may soon discover that the effectiveness of managing and leading are very different. Let me ask a question can you truly manage? People think about a time when you were successful managing, let's say, your spouse or a partner. Do you manage your people at work to get them on time, to create results? And is that really truly working?
07:15 Melissa Now, I'm not talking about a time when you got your way or you got a particular outcome. I'm talking about managing another person. See, because managing people is not a thing. True, yes, it does get things done. Leaders understand the actual cause of actions and outcomes. Managing people often becomes a game of personality and emotions. A lot of times, misunderstandings the leader tends to oil the squeaky wheel. We've all heard that, right? The most outspoken complainer. We do that to manage the unmanageable employees. Managing people often creates an immature environment. This is where employees or team members assume the role of, let's just say, a child in the working relationship. Not necessarily acting like a child, but assume that role. The role is central to our understanding emotional intelligence and points towards how effective we are in the workplace. We think of a parent child role and that management of the child, do we get the outcome?
08:25 Melissa But is it effective? Now, according to three internationally recognized experts in the area of self leadership, it's a deeper understanding of yourself and your emotional state, which is really vital to conquering your weakness. You may have heard this. It's called EQ, or emotional intelligence. It really measures your awareness of your feelings and what causes them and why. More specifically, it refers to the ability to identify and manage your own emotions as well as the emotions of others. The most common problem that we hate is our weakness perceived or likewise? Now, how can EQ help with that? Well, if you fall in love with the area that you perceive as a weakness within yourself, then the problem won't remain a problem. See here's the action. And the action is the antidote. Things that you think that are not good become a pattern of thinking. We continue to dwell on those things and think on those things, and all we can think about is the things that we hate.
09:38 Melissa When we decide to love the things that we hate, then the perception of weakness can be transformed into a place of strength. Seems that love really does conquer all, even in our own greatest weaknesses. Identifying your greatest weakness is very different than fixing it. Now I get it. Those fixers out there people tend to jump to fix so quickly that we actually fail to recognize the shortcomings. Weakness is always a symptom of thought. How do I fix it? Well, that's the wrong question. First you got to ask, why are people saying this? Why is it a problem? You've got to ask the right way. Too often we're short sighted even. And that's a huge leadership weakness. Looking at your why, it's not comfortable, it's not pleasant. Especially in this context of your greatest weakness. But it's crucial. Judgments will always creep in. Self judgments, defensiveness, or both.
10:51 Melissa It's only natural to have these feelings again, it's fear. EQ teaches us that it's okay. You're going to get upset. You're going to have to confront your shortcomings and understanding that it's okay to be there. That's the best way from keeping yourself to rushing to judgment or blocking feedback. The stuff, things that you really need to hear. Now, beating yourself up or taking a defensive stance, no, that's not going to work. It doesn't play to your strengths. You have to take time to sit with your feelings or sit with the defensiveness or the judgment and feel all the feels. EQ helps leaders see weakness in a new way. It's the first step towards new strengths. Before fixing things, start listening and discovering why there's a problematic pattern. Because when it comes to identifying your greatest weakness, you can only see what you get out of the way.
11:54 Melissa Of emotions are fickle expectations. They're often unspoken or unmet. And a leader is compassionate. They always seek to understand the feelings of others. A leader does not try to manage those feelings. I want to be very clear, as we see the generations and we're going to talk about this, but as we see the generations changing, feelings tend to lead the conversation. It is not a leader's job to manage feelings. Instead, a leader manages agreements. Let's think of it that way. A leader creates agreements with team members and enters into agreements on an adult to adult basis. Steve Chandler says this the best. Now, Jack Stack, an author of the international bestseller The Great Game of Business, says people will support what they help to create by getting an agreement on an issue you lead from a place of support. Steve Chandler then summarizes by providing a dialogue that influential leaders can share with their employees.
13:02 Melissa It sounds like something like this not doing a task is not an option. We need to work together to agree on how this is going to get done. Or how about, I need an agreement from you on this so it can be done effectively and efficiently? Or let me help you with this so that it gets done? How about, are you willing to do this? This something that you can make happen? Maybe you can get other people involved just in case you need support or follow up? How can we make this happen? The last one is, do you need my support? Leadership ultimately, is about service. Your service as a leader to your team and your employees. It needs to reflect a deeper understanding of what you can manage and what you can't. Getting agreements gets other people's involvement, gets them enrolled, gets them behind what they're doing.
14:01 Melissa It kind of gets you off the wheel of emotions and expectations and wondering things get done when leaders get people to share their commitments, their plans and ultimately their consensus. If you've got an employee performing poorly and you see a pattern of behavior that needs to change, it may be time that you introduce a new agreement. Stop managing people. Start serving them with a clear agreement on what's required. This way that you really can take that first step towards a new level of support, collaboration and ultimately results. I want to also make sure that we're consistently maturing and developing as a leader. I want to give you four reasons why leaders should admit when they make mistakes. Again, this is going back to the fear, right? But here it is. Number one reason is it earns respect. Guess what, leaders out there, people don't expect perfection from you, but they do demand your unwavering attention and bold initiatives.
15:06 Melissa When leaders are honest about their shortfalls, everybody can learn from their mistakes. Along the way, actually, they earn respect. They create an environment of transparency. Respected leaders take calculated risks that I get, others won't do, necessarily because maybe they fear that there's too many wrong decisions or they fear that they have to face consequences. When we play it too safe, that also doesn't earn respect because it's not authentic. Leadership being afraid to change the conversation, to challenge the status quo, to improve everything in a healthier way, those are things that we have to do. It's the competitive advantage that springs us in the ability to anticipate change, be courageous enough to act. The second one is vulnerability. And vulnerability strengthens the team. When leaders admit to mistakes, it brings clarity to opportunities and gaps. It elevates them to maybe a more profound sense of accountability that can be shared among the team.
16:16 Melissa Everyone begins to value the importance of having each other's back. It's a team environment. Vulnerability is a sign of a leadership strength. Yet many leaders are scared, are fearful to reveal what has traditionally been viewed as a weakness. They're too concerned with how people perceive them. Guys, this is a big one. They believe that it's going to undermine their executive presence and make them seem less authoritative. They're more comfortable behind their title because they haven't built the confidence to leverage their influence to test their ideas. It really creates a barrier between leaders and their teams. At times, more than ever, people want to relate to their leaders as individuals. They want to know them. They want to know that they've experienced the same problems and overcome similar obstacles. Number three is leading by example. When leaders are accountable for their mistakes, they are leading by example.
17:17 Melissa This elevates the employee engagement to a point of where their leaders are giving them permission to not fear making the wrong decision. They are empowering their employees to take a more initiative to knowing that they're not always going to have the right answer. Great leaders don't hesitate to make difficult decisions, and they lead by that example. By putting themselves in the front lines of change, they gravitate to what others may see as a leap of faith. They're willingly accept the challenge in any problem because they see it as an opportunity. Facing risk and potential obstacles along the way. Well, they take that responsibility. They admit when they make a mistake, when they fail, and they learn from that experience. Number four it builds a culture of trust. When leaders admit to making mistakes, they create an opportunity to learn respect, strengthen their teams and lead by example.
18:19 Melissa It ultimately builds a culture of trust. Now, a workplace culture that promotes confidence and trust allows employees to live with an entrepreneurial spirit, with an attitude of that as well. It stimulates innovation and initiative. People are tired of surprises in the workforce. A culture of trust promotes greater alignment and clarity of thought within the team. Each decision made or new relationship that's cultivated employees want to know that they're operating in an environment that puts them in a premium on truth and transparency. This means leaders who are not only open about sharing where their company is headed, but are trusted to steer it towards its future. Now, with mistakes come key learnings. And each key learning comes more experience. With more experience comes the greater ability to identify opportunities. Opportunities seized rightly can be the ultimate game changer in your platform as a leader. You will advance your career, your organization and the industry that you serve.
19:31 Melissa Most importantly, it will build and invest in people at no cost. Don't fear. Invest in your people. Thanks so much for joining me today on Understaffed. We'll see you next time.
19:48 Melissa Make sure to subscribe and like our podcast. If you'd like more information on today's topic or any other product or service featured on this, make sure to drop us a line and say hi or visit anytime at con searselite.com.