The core reason why Vocean exists is to help organizations worldwide to fully tap into the huge potential and talent that their employees have. To a large extent, this comes down to on organizations looks at “human resources”. In Vocean, no employee is decimated to a resource. All of us are individuals who together build up an organization. We are all Individuals; each with his or her unique point of view, competence and motivation factors. A lot of it comes down to management and therefore, in our blog we often return to the subject of leadership and our view on it. Deep in our philosophy lies the concept of that is often called ”The New Leadership”. Our last post was about how The New Leadership affect employees.
Today we are writing about it from a leadership position perspective.
How to lead is deeply engraved in most of us through popular culture, history, corporate culture, education and preconceptions about what ”a boss” is. Often we see management as being about control, about running things, about one person knowing more and better than the people ”underneath” him or her. We challenge that way of thinking about leadership. Research tells us that a softer way to manage and lead is way more effective than the emotionally distant and strict hierarchical ones.
For a leader to achieve a more humane leadership approach, it means letting go of the need to have total control. It means letting go of the detailed task management and instead focus on the goal and purpose. Everyday operation must be allowed to happen while the bigger results, the bigger game, is focused upon. In order to do that, the leader must place trust in his employees and coworkers and allow failure – as long as the employee learns from it. Getting everyone to get involved and work for the best of the company is much more difficult when management points with the whole hand and say “this is how it should be done”. Unless the people in an organization feel that mistakes are allowed, they will not try to think by themselves and grow.
The new leadership is about EQ as well as practical openness. How things are organized, from where people work, what times they come in, etcetera. If they feel that they can affect the practical circumstances surrounding their job then they’ll grow, feel empowered and more motivated. Employees must also be able to easily collaborate with colleagues as well as external partners. Collaboration in general should be encouraged from management, but also through great digital infrastructure. That includes what software is used, the workplace ambient as well as including how the managers act.
Companies with leaders that are empathic and trusting creates a culture where employees goes to great lengths to support each other. A leader that wants to achieve this must of course himself be guided and inspired by empathy and trust, as well as acknowledging the individuals and enable self-leadership. He or she must also be forgiving and allow for mistakes to happen. That will build courage and the feeling of safety. Control and an unforgiving environment will have the opposite effect.
In this context, the challenge for a manager lies partly within dealing with her or himself. Personal fears and issues – as well as personal ego – must be dealt with. Otherwise the leadership will originate from a place of fear and worry instead of from a place of warmth, compassion and maturity. The force of kindness and empathy is huge. This applies within organizations as well, since trust always makes humans grow and intolerance makes us shrink.