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Do You Know These 4 Reasons Leaders Depend On Others?

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Do You Know These 4 Reasons Leaders Depend On Others?

As with many of my Team Building programs I began the day by forming a circle with the participants. I handed a ball of yarn to one individual and asked them to throw the ball to a person in the circle who they depend on to get their job done. Then that person throws the ball of yarn to another participant who they depend on. Each person holds onto a piece of the yarn before tossing the ball. What results are interconnected and overlapping strands of yarn that forms a giant web. The visual is profound and helps everyone see how much we need one another to achieve our goals and deliverables.

What does your web of interconnections look like? Who are the people you count on in your work world?

Why is it so important for leaders to depend on others?

1. TO SEE OTHER PEOPLE’S POINTS OF VIEW

A great benefit from working with other people and listening to their ideas and suggestions is learning about different approaches to solving problems. Sometimes we are so stuck on seeing issues from our experiences that we forget there are alternative solutions. In a recent workshop, a manager was frustrated that several of her team members wouldn’t follow her tried and true procedures but rather wanted to test out a new strategy. By keeping an open mind she learned a new way to approach an on-going challenge. By depending on her younger team members, a customer’s need was creatively solved.

2. WE AREN’T STRONG IN ALL SKILL AREAS

We each have our strengths as well as our blind spots. Recognizing that we may not have the strongest skill set in a particular area is a sign of strong leadership. Instead of thinking that we are smartest person in the room, reach out to a team member with the best experience and knowledge to help an outcome shine.

3. MEANINGFUL COLLABORATION FOSTERS TRUST

On many teams I work with, I notice that there is far more competition than collaboration. The magic in teamwork is knowing how to bring individuals together for the betterment of the team. Here are a few ways to build trust to lead from wherever you are:

  • Ask your team members about their life outside of work
  • Find out what each person is really good at doing
  • Encourage team members to use their talents at work
  • Give credit to each person’s contribution
  • Share something personal about yourself with others

4. WE WILL CREATE BETTER OUTCOMES

When leaders depend on others they are honoring their abilities and knowledge. They are telling team members that they have important ideas and suggestions. They are empowering each person they connect with to offer their strongest work. When people feel valuable they will be more creative and even work harder. The result of including the contributions of others is a richer outcome and project. In my Team Building workshops I use the mathematical equation: 1+1=3. What? Exactly! We can achieve more as a team than the individuals working alone. So depend on others for great results!

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