Engagement is Getting People to Do Things THEY Want to Do
It’s a mistake to believe leadership is getting people to do what you want them to do.
Engagement is getting people to do things THEY want to do.
Pressuring people to do what they don’t want to do raises resistance and results in resentment.
Dwight D. Eisenhower said, “Leadership is the art of getting someone else to do something you want done because he wants to do it.” Let’s add the “we.”
It might begin with the leader, but success requires getting to WE. Leadership is getting people to do something WE want done.
Apart from WE, all you find is manipulation and resistance.
You aren’t leading when you’re pressuring and manipulating.
Mutual goals strengthen connection, increase motivation, and produce shared accountability.
Imposed goals invite resistance.
Any behavior that produces resistance is a hole in your leadership boat. Time spent overcoming resistance often creates more resistance.
People know when you are trying to lower their resistance and they don’t like it. It feels:
Skepticism goes up when you try to reconnect, after violating someone’s best interests.
What you love:
The more you do what you love, the more energy you have to do what you love.
Some things give you energy WHILE you do them. Other things give you energy after they’re done. Help people do more of the former and less of the latter.
You can’t lead successfully and steal energy at the same time.
Help people do what they love AND serve organizational interests at the same time.
- Praise and recognition.
- Coaching – behaviors, goals, timelines, support, and accountability in a learn-as-go environment.
- Praise – The fear of punishment might achieve conformity, but it never ignites the heart.
A leader of influence knows what others want and helps them get it.
Once again, great food for thought: “.. the fear of punishment might ignite conformity, but it never ignites the heart,,” so true… have been reading about the power of positive lately; how a little negative goes a very long way… As leaders, we need to provide more positive feedback than negative… Also really like: “A leader of influence knows what others want and helps them get it.” This. Is powerful…
Thanks Susan. My reading indicates you need at least 3 positives for every negative to maintain equilibrium. Some say it’s 5 to 1.
Don’t forget, if you haven’t already, to check out Jon Gordon. He’s Mr. Positive. http://www.jongordon.com/
Dan, if it’s this simple, why is engagement so miserably low in most organisations? Is there a massive disconnect between what businesses need doing and enough people who actually want to do those things? How many people are doing what they love at work rather than what they have to do to feed/clothe/house themselves and their families? Is finding people who genuinely love the really ghastly jobs that are out there a realistic expectation?
Thanks Mitch. I don’t think engagement is easy. You never fully solve complex problems in 300 words. But, I would refer you to Mike Rowe’s Ted Talk on Dirty Jobs. http://bit.ly/2NkAfY4
Great. A guy who doesn’t care if his workmates go home minus a thumb, provided the money’s good. And hey, hard work is great when you reach 60 as a plumber/joiner/electrician and you need both knees, both elbows and both hips replacing because a lifetime of honest hard work chiselling lumps out of walls has left you with arthritis so bad you can barely walk.
Wow Mitch! Good point
My word Dan, you pump out great material! Thanks for this, I may use it in some of my upcoming meetings.
Thanks Eric. Best wishes with your meetings.
Great post. I hate typing this next bit, always considered myself to be an optimist but it may come across pessimistic. Some of your points bringing to mind why there may be as I’ve suspected for a while, such a high proportion of people unhappy, incomplete in the jobs they currently do. If a survey was conducted, if not already, as to why a person was currently doing a specific job, the ‘want to’ vs ‘have to’, the result would be…
Thanks Dan. Perfectly said!! Leaders don’t manipulate people to do what they want. That’s pretty self centered. They key is creating a win-win transaction that creates a mutual stakeholder relationship – we invest together in a common goal. We must be able to frame it in a manner that considers the other person so they may benefit too.