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A gentleman that I recently befriended through my writing, gave me an insight into the corporate American views on leadership. He stated “Leaders tend to get more work done whereas managers, in my opinion, slow the process down. Leaders are not politically driven whereas managers are. Corporate America is more interested in managing for their profit benefit and fail to understand more profit and results occur with leadership.” This gentleman worked in corporate America for well over thirty years before he retired.
I wanted to touch on a leadership issue, as a result of our conversation. An organizations profit is the primary focus of most people within the organization. Customers drive the profit of the organization. Who is to take care of the customers? Do the leaders? Do the CEO, CFO, managers, and president? No, the entry-level employees, representatives, salesmen, technicians do! If entry-level employees take care of the customers and customers drive the profit of the organization, what is the point of management, leaders and upper-echelon personnel?
Everyone above entry-level is to serve the employees under them. As the CEO of a company, you typically have zero interaction with any customers. However, those employees under your leadership, programs, policies, and procedures do! Creating a work environment that promotes creativity, teamwork and positivity will directly reflect on the bottom line of the company. Employees that are motivated and have high morale will work harder and buy-in to the organizational goals.
Unfortunately, most upper-echelon personnel are looking after themselves. They believe in the power of manipulation over persuasion. Manipulation is a tempory solution to a permanent problem. With upper-echelon personnel not being leaders and manipulating subordinates you will have an extremely high turnover rate in entry-level employees. As each level of management is manipulating those below them, you will also end up with subordinate leaders building resumes and fleeing the company.
This constant turnover rate is a massive loss of profit in multiple perspectives. More time dedicated to training, less time to productivity, lost hours of work, more destroyed product and services and disgruntled employees serving your consumers. Seems like a lot of headaches and wasted profit, that is easily preventable.
The solution is simple. Focus on building a company that values the employees. Promote those that demonstrate leadership potential versus a yes man or managerial potential. Enhance the company benefits package and allow the newest and lowest employee on the totem pole to have a say. Companies need employees that get things done and done right. Having leaders guiding, mentoring, coaching, teaching and caring about their subordinates will create a positive work environment and promote growth in morale, work ethic and buy-in for the organization.
A team is as weak as its weakest link! Oftentimes organizations believe the bottom of the organization is the weakest…..maybe it’s the top!
Written by: Bradley Armentrout
Date: 22 September 2019