Grow and develop
Loving leaders understand that they have a duty to grow and develop people.
We all carry huge potential inside us, but so often this potential is unrealised and unfulfilled. A loving leader understands that it is their role to help to provide an environment where people feel safe and comfortable and also challenged and thought highly of, so as to strive to achieve their greatness. From a business point of view, empowered and fully capable teams are absolute dynamite in terms of high performance, loyalty and always, always worth the investment of effort, time and money. If you doubt this, just look at the affect that a favourite teacher of yours from your childhood will have had on you and your classmates- can you remember the positive vibe in the room?
Loving leaders have very high standards and expect a lot from their people; they expect them to put in the effort and by providing opportunities consistently, for their people to embrace them and run with them. So they provide training, mentorship, peer reviews,
two way feedback that is more like an honest conversation than and interview, and always seeks to empower their people to be able to do it themselves. Like a parent teaching their child to ride a bike, a loving leader invests and creates the opportunity, then nurtures a sense of adventure and autonomy in their people, so that they can ride out on their own. The goal is not to encourage people to need you as a leader, but to be self motivated and fully responsible in themselves. The love gives feely of itself, and in doing so new and beautiful things grow and develop.
Self reflections questions
Who truly inspired your growth and development?
What is it about who they were or what they did that inspired you?
How did they encourage you to develop?
Can you show this to your people?
Loving leaders understand that the dualistic thinking of something or someone as entirely good or bad, can only take us so far. We must go further and embrace the paradoxical nature of our life and of our relationships.
Dualistic thinking is all about good or bad, hot and cold, light and dark. And too often we can apply overly simplistic and generic thinking towards our people and their circumstances. We see behaviour that we don’t like, so we can label and judge a person, thinking that we are in the right, when so often we may be misinformed, misunderstood or just plain wrong. A loving leader understands that there is always more going on underneath the surface in people’s lives than they show, and makes allowances for this.
Loving leaders know that to label people, circumstances or situations as good of bad exclusively, is very poor judgement, both from a business point of view and definitely as it pertains to people and relationships. Think about it now. Have you ever had a terrible situation that in the long term lead to growth, healing and wonderful things? In that case, might we have judged the thing or person too soon, as the real value has only been revealed over a longer period of time?
Loving leaders know that any judgements made need to be as informed as possible, and are comfortable that something can be both potentially wonderful and terrible at the same time. They look for the flaws in the brilliance and the value in the supposedly useless. This makes them in a business context very sharp, disruptive and flexible, as their humility keeps them always on the lookout for potential to be realised from unlikely places.
Self reflections questions
What situation or which person have you previously considered as either exclusively good or bad?
Can you see them in a different way?
Can you look for the good in supposedly “bad” people and events?
Would you like someone to categorise you as just good or bad?