Build Relationships At All Levels Of The Organization
Everyone remembers the last conversation they had with you. Let that sit for a few seconds. How do the leaders in your organization treat people? Is it with respect for what they do? Is it with genuine interest about getting to know them at an individual level? Is it about showing them that you care as much about them when they’re not as work as when they are? I hope so. When your leaders come into the office for the day (now that we’re getting back to the office that is), do they say hi to people as they head to their office? Do they stop and ask the receptionist how their weekend was? Do they have hallway conversations for no other reason than to say hi and build relationships? Or are they too busy and too important to talk to people who aren’t as important as them?
Just watch next time.
I heard a great story about the culture at NASA when they were preparing to put a man on the moon. JFK stopped a janitor who was mopping the floors and asked him what his job was. He responded, ”I’m helping put a man on the moon.” I hope that’s a true story because it’s so powerful. How do you create a culture in a company where ever employee, regardless of their title, understands how important their job is. I believe you do that by having great leaders.
How can you tell if a leader is going to treat people with respect, be genuine in their conversations, and be the type of person you want to work for or with? It’s easy. Just take them to dinner or lunch. Preferably at a nice restaurant that has a host and a traditional wait staff. Then watch them interact with the people who work there. Is it with respect for what they’re doing? Is it with appreciation that they are there to take care of you? Is it casual, genuine and not forced? I’ve changed my mind several times about hiring someone or promoting them after taking them to dinner. Trust me. It works.
Originally posted on Forbes.com.