I had an interesting thought today in our Quest For Authentic Manhood lifegroup. Tierce Green was teaching about how we’re to treat our wives as authentic men. One of the core concerns he mentioned that every wife has, is the need to feel significant, and we as husbands have a responsibility to meet that need. In order to do this, we must tell her how much we value her and how much we value what she brings to our relationship. We need to learn to praise her more and criticize less.
As Tierce was explaining this point, he shared a statistic from a business survey that was very interesting and one every leader ought to at least consider. In this survey, management (leaders) and employees were asked what they thought was most the most significant factor in an employee’s commitment to the company etc. Managers (leaders) all listed money as the #1 factor, but employees listed money as 3rd. Employees said the most important thing to them was a feeling of significance that came from recognition of their contribution & worth to the company! Managers (leaders) listed this characteristic as last. That’s a significantly different perspective.
I think this is another example of how easy it is for leaders to separate themselves from the people they are leading and get so out of touch that they don’t really realize what’s going on in their organization.
This past December as a part of our evaluation process here at GFC, I asked every staff member to anonymously evaluate every member of our staff – including themselves and me. We evaluated each other based on 13 core values of our staff team. The results were very helpful in identifying areas where there were significant differences of perspective. For example, one of our core values is FLEXIBILITY. I view myself as one of the most flexible people on our staff, but our staff doesn’t view me that way. Part of that is probably the result of my being the Lead Pastor and I know what I want, but it also allowed me to think about how I come across to those who are on my team and make changes as needed.
When we as leaders are unwilling to listen honestly to those we are leading, we can easily get caught up in our own perspective and be totally unaware of what’s really going on among the troops. If this goes on for a long period of time, we end up creating a culture of distrust which is never profitable.
At the end of our staff hallway, we have a large sign with a quote we got from Andy Stanley that simply reads: “We can survive bad mistakes and bad decisions, but we cannot survive a culture of mistrust.”