What Would Have Lasting Benefits For Your Organization:
Managing People Or Leading Great Employees?

We probably all agree on the answer, but there seems to be a practice gap. An article was recently published regarding why great employees leave what are believed to be organizations with great cultures. It gave us pause since retaining and attracting talent are essential in today’s business environment. To this end, it is critically important to identify gaps, and develop leaders and employees – the essential people aspects of organizations.

While no organization is perfect, do businesses realize what their issues and gaps are? Or is the belief that there aren’t issues, or that issues have been adequately addressed; with an underlying assumption of having established a great culture, a great working climate, and that well-being is fostered; when the opposite may be true? Based on the article, this may be the case.

We all have blinders, but acknowledging this and reflecting on these questions are great first steps. Then continue the momentum to identify and address potential gaps. The authors present that a great culture results when behaviors, systems, and practices are aligned; and all 3 elements align with the organization’s espoused values. This alignment must begin at the top with senior leadership and then trickle down throughout the organization as well as back up to the top – often the trickle down and up gets hijacked, but needs to be sustained!.

Accordingly, to cultivate such a movement requires momentum and, although the term isn’t quite right, leadership development – or perhaps a better descriptor is cultivating leader attributes. Often managers are promoted because they have good technical skills and are valued employees, but not necessarily because they are great leaders. The new managers are sometimes provided with management skills training, but this does little to develop fundamental leader attributes.

We understand budgetary and time constraints – there are obviously only so many hours in the day. However, we also witness the consequences when essential people skills slip through the cracks. Yet these leader attributes – skills that can be developed – are absolutely critical for supporting today’s workforce.

There is an integrated leadership model that cultivates great leaders and fosters a psychologically safe work environment. It is based on the best leadership development models and has three primary components:

  • Personal: Leading self
  • Private: Leading, mentoring, and coaching others
  • Public: Making a difference for the team, the organization and the community

– Leading self includes developing essential leadership competencies: self-awareness, resilience, compassion, and attributes based on great leaders including personal and organization values.

– Leading others is based on skillful communication, positive interactions and relationship building to bring out the best in, and foster leader-fullness, in others.

– Public is leading with others as well as how leaders present their authentic self throughout the organization and beyond.

Identifying and addressing gaps and cultivating great leaders matter for engagement, productivity, well-being, retention, and talent attraction. It takes a movement, but like a fly-wheel, once there is momentum it becomes effortless, becomes the norm, and leads to sustainable organizational and individual well-being.

Contact Dimensions for information, with any questions, or if you would like to discuss an integrative leadership approach.

So, what stops movements? What is your experience and what additional thoughts do you have regarding what has lasting benefits at your organization: Managing people or leading great employees?

Why Great Employees Leave Great Cultures