It’s All About Respect!

Quote for today: “A person who feels appreciated will always do more than what is expected.”

I had the privilege last week to be a general session speaker at the Arkansas Gas Association’s Annual Meeting in Ft. Smith.  My topic was ‘Coaching for Improved Performance’.  I met some interesting people and had conversations with many of them.  Most of the questions I received dealt with how can they could be a better leader, how to get people engaged, how to communicate expectations more effectively, and how to have difficult conversations and deal with poor performance.  We all want to be better at this, don’t we?  I find that wherever I go, people are hungry to develop their leadership skills.  Thanks again, AGA, for asking me to present to your great group of people!  We also had the privilege to meet Governor Asa Hutchinson, who spoke at the meeting, too!  He spoke about his vision for the great State of Arkansas.

While in Ft. Smith, we went to the local Books-a-Million, which is not unusual for me because I love to read.  I was looking for a particular book and couldn’t find it so my husband found the manager and he was so helpful to us.  His name is Blake.  After Blake had helped us, he went back to the front desk to help others.  I thought of another question and went to the front counter where Blake was talking with one of the employees, who was about 17-18 years old.  What caught my attention was Blake called him ‘Sir’ three times while they were having their conversation.  While Blake was following me to the Business section, I commented to him that I was impressed by him calling his young employee, ‘Sir’.  His reply was, “It’s all about respect. Everyone deserves respect!”  Now, my friends, I have to say that Blake knows what leadership is all about!  He’s a great role model for his employees … and customers!

Wouldn’t it be a better world if we all lived by the belief that everyone deserves respect?  It doesn’t take a lot of effort to make someone feel appreciated and important.  A ‘good morning’, or just being intentional about speaking or asking how someone is doing today shows respect.  Another way to show respect is to ask for and listen to an employee’s ideas about how to make things better.  How about returning phone calls in a timely manner, and giving employees credit for their ideas?

I believe it is more important for a leader to lead from a position of influence rather than because of their title or position.  Do you have willing followers?  If so, it’s probably because you have demonstrated positive influence and people want to be like you.  Leaders should be role models and live out their values every day.  Employees notice when you don’t!

I love this quote by John Maxwell, “Leadership is not about titles, position or flowcharts.  It is about one life influencing another.”

Determine today to be the difference to your employees or co-workers around you!  Be real.  Be genuine.  Be a leader!  Be like Blake!

All the best,

Judy

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