By Gordon Tredgold
CREDIT: Getty Images
The fastest way to accumulate things is to take, take, take. You have to fight for your share, and if you don’t get it, someone else will, right?
This is the way bad leaders operate. They believe there isn’t enough to go around, so they spend all their energy trying to get everything they can. They fight for money, praise, and position, and do everything they can to get it all. They think if they don’t get it all, they won’t be able to get enough. They operate with a scarcity attitude. Money, praise, and power are scarce, so they have to hoard it.
Instead of having a scarcity attitude, you need to take an abundance approach. The best leaders are happy to share what they have. In doing so, they put their teams first and their own needs second. That, in turn, allows everyone to thrive, including the leader.
On the surface, this sounds simple. You’ll go into work tomorrow and give everyone a raise, or you’ll relinquish some of your power to your right-hand employee. Then, you can cross that item off your list and go back to doing business as usual, knowing you shared.
It’s just not that simple. This isn’t just an item on your to-do list. You need to create a culture of generosity by giving on a daily basis.
So, now it’s sounding a little more difficult, right? Well, it really isn’t that hard. If you do four things on a daily basis, you will become a generous leader. Everyone will view you as a giver instead of a taker, and your company will thrive.
Be Mindful of Your Employees
Takers keep all the attention for themselves. They don’t connect with employees because that means they have to give something of themselves. You need to do the opposite.
Be mindful of the people who are around you and connect to them. Be generous with your attention in order to become a more generous leader. As you make these connections, your team will want to work harder for you. You will quickly realize that the more you give, the more you end up with in the end.
Share What You Know
As a leader, you have accumulated a wealth of knowledge over the years. Knowledge is power in the business world, so share some knowledge with others. Teach people what you have learned over the years, so they can develop into leaders themselves. You want to surround yourself with the best people, and that’s easier to do when you share your training and knowledge.
Share Your Time
“I cannot be generous if I’m overly protective of my time.”
Repeat that sentence over and over again until it’s ingrained in your head.
This is the hardest thing for leaders to understand, and it’s very important. If you are always in a rush and only want to spend your time doing the things you want to do, you will get a reputation as a taker. When you are willing to share your time, you show people you think they are important. Then, they will view you as generous.
That doesn’t mean you need to make yourself available at all times. You will have to deal with deadlines, but don’t spend all day watching the clock. Give someone 10 or 20 minutes. That person will pay you back in dividends.
This might sound absurd, but many leaders are afraid to delegate. Sure, they keep their employees busy, but they refuse to part with important tasks. Some are afraid others won’t do it correctly, so they decide to do it themselves. Others don’t want to part with important tasks because they don’t want someone else to get the credit. They want all the glory, so they do the work.
Whatever the case may be, it all really comes down to control. People who refuse to delegate do not want to give up control.
It’s time to change that. Show your employees you trust them by delegating key tasks. Then, heap on the praise when they do a job well. This will show everyone you’re willing to give employees the opportunity to succeed, and when they do, you’re right there with the praise.
If you’re a taker, you’re going to have a hard time leading. Your employees will quickly realize you’re in it for yourself, and they’ll lose all faith in you. It won’t take long for them to understand that even if they succeed, you’ll take the credit. They’ll start failing because there isn’t an incentive to succeed.
On the other hand, if you’re a giver, you will come off as a generous leader. You will create a stronger team, and you will have more time on your hands. You will form real connections with your employees, and you will also build a nice working environment.
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This content was originally published by Inc Magazine. Original publishers retain all rights. It appears here for a limited time before automated archiving. By Inc Magazine