We have spent the past few weeks examining the dynamics of teams. If you, as a leader, have committed to your personal reflection and growth then you have the opportunity to leverage your insights and learning to inspire the people you lead. The more clear you become about your purpose or calling the more authentic your passion translates to inspiring others.
The heart and core of my coaching with leaders is discovering and articulating your core values, your purpose and your strengths. With clarity about your core I have found that who you are and how you show up is grounded and authentic. When you are armed with the clarity of your core you are unstoppable in realizing your hopes, dreams, and aspirations.
This is part 1 in the 5-part series on Passion by Diana Gabriel, Certified Strengths Strategy Coach.
Ignore purpose, values, and passion and you miss out on powerful motivators for performance. Click To Tweet
Take a look at today’s top-performing companies, and you will inevitably find a high degree of employee engagement. From frontline workers to CEOs, people are passionate and clear about their companies’ purpose, values, and mission.
Most workers are motivated to give their best and often go beyond what is required when their leader is passionate. Some are lucky enough to work for companies that are consistently designated a best place to work.
But for countless other organizations, only 20% of employees say they’re excited about work. They show up to earn a paycheck. At most, they aim to achieve personal success and climb the promotion ladder.
In the first workplace, people are passionate. In the latter, they are looking out for themselves, with management struggling to realize performance goals. We could attribute the difference to organizational factors like hierarchy, processes, incentives and, often, personalities. But most likely the real culprit may be their leaders’ failure to be passionate and ignite passion.
I see this in many of the organizations when I coach the executive teams. Leaders often do not recognize emotional factors as relevant to their team’s performance, except for when things go wrong.
Leaders, like you, are becoming aware that workplace performance also depends on emotional factors like engagement, culture, values and a sense of purpose. But all too often leaders and managers fail to foster employee connection to the corporate mission.
While most leaders are highly experienced in financial planning, capital budgeting, and organizational structure and strategies, most do not receive formal training in building, leveraging or measuring employee passion. You cannot offer this to your team if you are not in touch with your why, your vision, your purpose and your passion!
Engagement surveys are a reasonable way to gauge passion levels, but they cannot capture what it looks like or how to increase it.
I see successful startups filled with hordes of passionate people, yet we view them as anomalies – unique because of their youthful culture or trendy products. We seldom imagine older, more traditional companies as hotbeds of passion and energy.
Stagnant leadership thinking plagues executives who fail to identify a purpose beyond making profits.
“If you look through the right lens, every organization has the potential for world-changing impact. The role of a leader is to foster passion around that impact and to keep that passion alive by reinforcing it every day.”
– Jim Whitehurst, CEO of Red Hat, in The Open Organization: Igniting Passion and Performance (Harvard Business Review Press, 2015)
When you recognize your higher purpose and see your company’s potential to make a difference in the world, you can then ignite passion in your people and achieving stellar performance. When you ignore purpose, values, and passion, you’re missing out on one of the most powerful motivators for performance.