The stench of sweat, dumbbells and dreams grew in the room when the clock went and the teacher said, "Go!" It was our lockout inspection for my graduation from boot camps and we all had to pass to move on to the next "adventure". 80 sweat, stinky and desperate men sped to get all of their closet folds and cover within millimeters of what we had been given as the standard. With anxiety anxiety, drought sweating and flying clothes, my company's boss looked up and said, "LUTZ! What are you doing!?" Yes, it looked crazy, but from (what seemed) thousands of items that had to be removed, I had taken my skivvies (underwear) and put them on my head like a hat to keep them out of my way till I was ready to cast them. I answered sheepishly, "Lord, it keeps them out of the way!" He bowed his head, looked at me confused and then said: "ok, if it works, do it!" At the moment I walked around and saw 80% of my teammates throw their "obsessive" on their heads in order to achieve that goal. We, as a team, accepted our opinion and moved to the next challenges that were set for us. Our leader knew that success did not come from independence, not precise policy. Certainly he had trained us, given the method and told us a conclusion, but he knew that the journey had to be ours and our possession.
Step One: Show Them Most adults learn best with active participation – show them how to do what needs to be done. Resemble the behavior and attitude you want others to display. Create the values that describe who you are. These are the things that are needed to lay the foundation for success. All too often, as leaders, we assume that because we know something, our team members also know. Shows bridges the gap between what we think and what really is. It facilitates the stress of the unknown and ensures that each member is on the same page from the beginning. The show differs from the exact direction. Exhibition is training; show is a guide; an exhibition is part of what's happening and represents investment in your people and the process.
Step Two: Tell Them As you show them tell them what that means. What is the expectation? What is the standard? How does it look, feel and be like when we get there? Obviously, the value of what is done and how each individual factors in conclusion. We, as leaders, need to turn the wireless key to WIIFM (what's up for me) and let the team know how it's done for them. We also need to deal with "why." One of my favorite brands is: "Anyone who knows how to do a job will always work, but he who knows why always becomes his boss." We should say "why" so we are developing those around us to take some time on our backs. Be clear, be sure and tell them!
Step Three: Watch Them Once you've shown them the way and clearly explain your expectation, step back and watch your team with new ways to get there. If they start to turn of course, give them a little width to explore new possibilities and then, if it seems it's not going to work, go back to steps one and two to get everyone back on track. Watch them spread their wings when looking for new features! Look at your team by developing personally and professionally as you, carefully, lead the way. Watch out! You will be surprised at the places you will go!
No matter where you are in this process, do not forget to have fun! You set speed! If you want to promote climate with increased creativity, innovation and cooperation, the responsibility lies with those responsible. With active participation, communication and motivating people to take control, you must create a climate that is high in confidence, resilience and patience! So come there! Get your team with the underwear on their heads!