Liz Wiseman wrote a tremendous book about leadership, in which she describes the qualities of an incredible leader. It’s my favourite “leadership” book!
In the book, Liz talks about what people often describe it’s like being around a great leader. They say it’s: “Exhilarating, yet exhausting.”
The “But they’re good” excuse
One interesting scenario I’ve been faced with many times and so have many of my members, is the scenario where we “go easy” on efficient team members, because “they’re good”.
Just because your team is doing a stellar job and are amazing people, does not mean that you as a leader should not still expect more of them. That, by very definition, is what a leader does.
Expect more from others than they expect of themselves. Said differently, SEE more in others than they at times see in themselves! That’s why Liz said that so many people describe that it is both “exhilarating AND exhausting” to be around great leaders.
Leaders bring out more in their teams than people know they have in themselves. Expect more of the people around you, especially the capable ones, the good ones and the ones who are doing a great job.
Not Just Those Struggling In Their Job
My point is, that most management advice focuses on getting “weak” or “underperforming” team members up to scratch. Of course, this is still relevant, but remember, top performers still NEED to be challenged, pushed and driven to achieve more. Well, that’s if you want to keep them!
BUT, THEY MAY NOT LIKE IT…at first!
They may even think that you are being a little harsh. But trust me, a top performer (you included) needs to be asked the following question at times….
IS THAT YOUR BEST WORK?
And if they are really a “top performer”, they almost certainly can’t answer that question ALL TIME TIME with a YES!
That drives them even more, to achieve more, grow more, and crucially ….. ENJOY IT MORE, even if it’s a little “exhausting” at times ;).
Don’t make the fatal mistake of thinking that a top performer should never be challenged… they need it, crave it and want it, if they are in fact an “A Player”.
Of course, be kind and thoughtful in the way you do it but, DO IT!
With that said, let me ask you a question…
Where do you need to raise the standards and expect more of those around you?
Hopefully, you found this email useful and inspiring!
Yours in Service,
Dr. Ryan Rieder, D.C.