As I sat and listened to two principals and one business manager describe how the “busy-ness” of the last 3 months had overwhelmed them into not communicating, I was reminded of the power of conversation. And also of what happens when people stop communicating with each other with respect, appreciation, authenticity, congruency and empathy. Three months ago I was privileged to attend a planning meeting in which a vision was established for the next 3 years, a plan for the next 12 months and goals for the next 90 days. Standard stuff – and this is a world-class business. What I didn’t expect at yesterday’s review was that the business would be “on plan” but that the senior management team would haveÂ experiencedÂ a serious deterioration in their professional relationships. TheÂ elephantÂ in the room was palpable and rather smelly. Fortunately:
these are highly intelligent andÂ articulateÂ people;
they trust each other implicitly and
they have worked together for many years and
I was there! To facilitate and encourage.
And so we were able to craft a declaration of feelings, a solution and a closure of this period.
I don’t know how many times a week I find myself saying:
All problems exist in the absence of a good conversation
But here we were again.
The biggest asset you have in your business is PEOPLE.
They are not an overhead on the P&L, they are an asset on the balance sheet.
And if you treat people- all of your people (including your partners) with respect and courtesy – then they will swim the Channel for you.
If you constantly grumble, punish or exclude – they will either sabotage or bugger off.
Its not rocket science – and its not about systems – its about everyone being a leader and everyone wanting to be lead.
Believe in people.