3 Questions Your People Ask About You

Bob Schultek
Author of
The Gauntlet

Leaders rely on feedback from their teams as one metric to gauge their effectiveness. Asking each team member what’s going well and what can improve produces some insight, but empathetic leaders seek a more comprehensive perspective that explores how their credibility and intentions are perceived by their teams.

To gain this perspective, these leaders suppose that their personnel are asking 3 questions about them:

1. “Do you care about me?” Does an employee invest energy, talent and discretionary effort to help an organization succeed if that person believes that no one cares about him or her? By sharing experiences, ideas and suggestions to help their teams achieve goals and develop their competencies, leaders demonstrate that they do care about the success of their people as well as their company.

2. “Can you help me?” When an employee asks a reasonable question, the leader’s response communicates more than an answer. Given typical time pressures, the temptation is to respond promptly so that no additional thought is demanded from the inquirer. But certain questions present teaching moments for leaders. These are opportunities to respond with a question or two that educate the inquirer about the rationale behind a specific policy and procedure. Helping an employee learn why a reply is relevant expands that person’s knowledge and promotes initiative.

3. “Can I trust you?” Leading by example, walking the talk, and fulfilling promises strengthen a leader’s credibility. Encouraging comparable behavior among all team members builds confidence that team members can rely on a leader, and on one another. Being able to rely on a leader, to have a sense of the leader’s intentions and accountability, enables and sustains trust.

How do you suppose that your team
to answers these 3 questions?
How frequently do you consider
what their perspective of you may be?

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