LOVE IN THE WORKPLACE: LANDMINE OR LIFELINE?
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Love sells. McDonalds’ 2015 ad campaign was named, “Delivering What You Love.” Johnson & Johnson’s brand equity campaign was J&J for All You Love. Carat Lane’s New Expressions of Love links its jewelry designs to romantic expectations.
It’s called “heart marketing” and countless companies use it to successfully promote themselves and their products to the outside world. Why, then, don’t more leaders use it inside their organizations?
Why do so many employees feel free to bring their dogs to work but not their love?
Could it be that the problem is not with the “knowing” but with the “doing”?
We know that scores on statements like “Management shows a sincere interest in me…” are key differentiators of the top 10 companies on Fortune’s 100 Best Companies to Work For list. Duncan Coombs calls love an important operating system within the organization.
Whole Foods CEO John Mackey asserts that we need to practice love – including at work. But how can leaders do it?
Love in the workplace: landmine or lifeline
Say the word.
Just say it. Don’t be afraid. Be bold enough to add “love” (or “soul” or “heart” or “caring”) to your next PPT presentation. Next time you see something good, say something good — “Colin, I loved your suggestions in that meeting.”
Show the word.
Listen deliberately to at least one person every day.
Open your heart to their potential, their dreams, their accomplishments. To paraphrase Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Every organization is the lengthened shadow of its leaders.” So cast a caring, heartfelt – dare I say “loving”? – shadow across yours.
Spread the word.
Let it be known that “Love is not a four-letter word here,” even though it is. Tell your team to tell their teams to tell their teams that they can bring more than their dogs to work!
What does love in the workplace look like to you?
Dr. Beverly Kaye is recognized internationally as a professional dedicated to helping individuals, managers, and organizations understand the practical “how-to” principles of employee development, engagement, and retention. Her books and learning materials have stood the test of time; her bestselling book, Love ‘Em or Lose ‘Em: Getting Good People to Stay, is on its sixth edition.