If You Can’t Say Something Nice…

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Does your team love their work and working with each other? Are they engaged with their work? We’ve talked many times before about the championship team. This week’s note falls in this category.

We’ve all heard the adage, ‘If you can’t say something nice, say nothing at all.’

The adage applies in day-to-day social interaction of course. However, as a leader we owe it to our teams to communicate with candor.

If you see something, you must say something in regard to development.

Pause for a moment – I’m not talking about being a jerk, being a nag, or being obnoxious.

Time is precious. As a team we only have so many opportunities to do our thing. We must take full advantage of each opportunity. Learning will happen over time of course. We’re in a hurry though. Our responsibility is to develop others. If they are making an avoidable mistake and are possibly not aware of the problem or how to address it, who else should help them?

Ironically, what I’ve found personally is that the times I normally heard great candor from my leader was not when I somehow failed but rather as part of what I would consider a success. These leaders were courageous enough to help me get better by pointing out ways to get even better in the aftermath of success. Champion level stuff.

One of the highest contributors to employee engagement is to feel challenged. That starts in-house between leader and team member. Beyond constant verbal abuse, what is the worst thing we can do as leaders? I think it’s the opposite of challenge and that is to not care, to not challenge.

You have to CARE!

If you care you will challenge. You will provide feedback and guidance with candor. You will be motivated to do this even when it’s easier not to. You will make the extra effort.

Think back on your career. Do you remember most when your boss patted you on the back and said good job, or when they made the effort to help you and made you better?

To do this week: A quick test. Is there anyone on your team who you don’t naturally ask for input to things? Why? Are they lacking something that discounts their opinion? Do they know about it? Are they working on it? Or, have you written them off? Have you stopped caring? If so, why are they still on the team?

Let me know how it’s goes. Click the “comments” box below to participate in an on-going discussion via LinkedIn.

Jim Canterucci

I don't know everything. But I want to. The focus of our firm, Transition Management Advisors, is to develop leadership capabilities to create a championship culture, generate innovation, and successfully lead the resulting changes.

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On June 13, 2018
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