342 | How Leaders Can Increase Connection

A vulnerability is not a weakness. In fact, the courage it takes to be vulnerable is something that should be celebrated. Today’s message is about how leaders can increase connection.

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How Leaders Can Increase Connection: The Transcript

Did you ever learn that vulnerability is a weakness? Did you ever learn that showing your emotions and expressing what you really think, even if it’s something that others may judge you for, that is a weakness?

It’s common to grow up that way. I had brothers and you didn’t wanna show weakness around those older brothers because they would take every advantage of that. Maybe you had sisters. Maybe you were the bully in your house. Either way, vulnerability is not a weakness. Let me tell you why after this.

My name’s Gene Hammett, I work with hypergrowth companies to help them understand the challenges of hypergrowth. A lot of my clients and a lot of the research I do are around the Inc. 5000 companies. When I talk to leaders about improving their connection as a leader, it is a great conversation because it’s not something that we normally talk about. They’re very focused on strategies and growth metrics and tools and sometimes people but they don’t really talk about themselves. They don’t talk about what’s going on inside them, their own doubt and fear.

Here’s the thing. If you want to connect with your employees to a higher level. If you want to get more out of them, want them to feel psychologically safe inside of the work environment, be engaged in their work and perform at a higher level then you want them to be able to talk to you about what they’re vulnerable about. You want them to talk about their fears and doubts.

Now, I say all this because I know how powerful it is, but I also know how rare it is. What I’m going to talk to you about today is one of the key things you can do to increase your connection as a leader. The key to this is you want to go first. Leaders go first in so many cases in this world. If you want to really ask someone to share with you what’s going on inside the company then you might share your own fear first. So, what does that do?

Well, when you go first and you share doubt or fear and something that you’ve had to overcome or maybe it’s something that you’re struggling with now then they will be open to following suit behind that. I know it’s counterintuitive to what’s going on, you wanna be strong as a leader. You wanna really do something that really changes everything and you feel like you’ve gotta lead the way with the right decision, always knowing what to do. But that doesn’t always foster connection. So, there’s a balance between these things.

If you want your employees to be more open with you then you’ve got to go first. And that happens so rarely in today’s leadership. I share this story with you because I want you to be a stronger, better leader. I want you to be comfortable in who you are. And I want you to have people around you that you can tell them what you think, you can listen to what they think and you guys can grow together. That is the sign of strength. Being vulnerable is not a weakness.

My name’s Gene Hammett, I work with hypergrowth companies to help them create strategies for growth. If I can help you in any way please make sure you reach out. If you wanna keep getting messages like this, make sure you subscribe and as always, lead with courage. I’ll see you next time.

 

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