Lately I have been exploring the relationship between expectation and capacity. Capacity to produce and capacity to receive. It seems one predestines the other.
At first glance playing to win or playing not to lose, seem like two ways to say the same thing. But there truly is a world of difference between them. Playing to win embraces the hope of ‘what if’ and almost relies on it for hyperbolic results. The other plays with a clenched fist, desperate and defensive.
When people truly understand who they are, they will also uncover their talents, abilities and Strengths. By simply allowing who they are to assist in guiding what they accomplish, Leaders will enjoy a level of engagement and productivity from their people they have never seen before.
Research shows that when people are actively engaged with who they are and they incorporate those abilities in their everyday activity – productivity and contribution goes up 2 to 8 times. Not up by 25% or even 50%, but by 200% to 800%. That’s doing more with less.
This might be one of the most frightening and commonly bantered phrase in the market today, and it comes with some sobering implications. The reality that Leadership are being asked to accomplish more than last year, using fewer resources and resulting in higher levels of control, seems like an insurmountable task. How can improved results be accomplished using fewer people, spending less money, and resulting in better control – in this market?
There seems to be debate about whether Leaders are born or raised. Some believe that leaders are born and no amount of training or conditioning can replicate their ability. Others hold that Leadership is a trainable skill and that it can be transferred from one person to another. Certainly we all agree that some Leaders are better at what they do, than others. However, the most accurate answer to the Leadership debate is probably; YES.
Empowering people, whether they are employees or volunteers, has more to do with ‘who’ they are than ‘what’ we permit them to do. The term empowerment implies a sense of “I have the power/ability – you don’t, and I am looking for some terms under which I am willing to bestow this power onto you.”
As a Swimming World record holder I spent many hours in the swimming pool and in the gym, doing workouts. The workouts are designed to tax the mind and the body to a new level of stress, damage or breakdown. Then (by design) the mind and body repair itself, having expanded its operational range, and are now stronger for it. The deeper you go in to the new territory of ‘breakdown’ – the stronger you become after the recovery has taken place.
At first pass, people seem to make little distinction between praise and affirmation, often substituting the one word for the other. In reality though, there is a measurable difference in the attitude and satisfaction of a person who is praised when compared with a person who is affirmed.