You Don’t Have to be Man’s Best Friend

Everyone disdains leaders who are in it just for themselves. Self-absorbed leaders destroy relationships, disengage employees, and diminish results.

Brave leaders build relationships. Cowards use distance and fear to control.

leaders don't have to be man's best friend but they have to care.png

Fear drives disconnection, but strong relationships replace fear with respect.

If you don’t care, the team you lead doesn’t care either.

6 steps to results through relationships:

#1. Explore and understand problems and issues lightly. Many leaders are like hogs on slop when it comes to problems. It’s not bad that you see the bad. It’s what you do after judging that makes you a successful leader. You stink if problems consume your attention. No one loves a stinker.

#2. Get to goals and opportunities quickly, even if you started with problems. Leadership begins when you face forward. Hand-wringers lead anxious teams, but noble goals inspire commitment, courage, and relationship.

#3. Connect goals to reasons. The most important thing leaders understand is the reason behind behaviors. What reasons motivate teammates? People engage for their reasons, not yours. Relationships are built around reasons.

I have a thirty-something female on my team. She has some ideas, but she isn’t clear about what she wants. We’re searching for inner drivers that ignite her passion.

When you find your reasons, passion takes over.

#4. Build on abilities. Strong relationships emerge when leaders connect teammates’ strengths to problems and opportunities. How might you leverage strengths and talents?

#5. Define behaviors. What behaviors work for them? Keep in mind that their way is better than your way, as long as it doesn’t do harm.

#6. Invite others to define accountability. Imposing accountability on others weakens relationships. Self-imposed accountability is the only kind. Trusting others to establish accountability strengthens relationships and expands ownership.

Uncaring leaders lead disconnected teams. Of all the things you do, care first.

How might leaders build strong relationships and deliver great results at the same time?


I’m delighted to partner with Clarity Development Consulting to offer the proven “Coaching for Engagement” program. Drop me an email if you’d like to explore having Bob Hancox and me come to your organization to develop the coaching skills of your team.