In April of 2013 we officially launched the 15Five blog with a post simply titled, “Start With Why”. Back then our WHY was to help individuals and organizations reach their highest potential. But something vital was not being expressed – the human element, the relationship between managers and employees.
Today our WHY is to create the space for people to be their greatest selves. That space may look and feel different in every company, but it is always created by leadership communicating regularly with employees and supporting their teams in being successful.
We offer this blog as a resource for successful people who desire continued personal and professional growth. The content posted here will help you answer these 2 questions: What does Team Success look like at my company? How can I create the space for myself and others to step into greatness?
My personal WHY is to create a world where work is a place that supports people in stepping into their greatness, what Abraham Maslow called self-actualization. Many prosperous businesses like LinkedIn, and O.C. Tanner have adopted a similar frame and are far more successful than they would be otherwise.
We are already experiencing the early stages of this shift all over the business world. Managers are no longer seeing people as fixed, replaceable assets or resources (industrial revolution thinking that is still widely persisting today). Instead they are seeing people as whole human beings with virtually unlimited potential.
I’m not being overly-optimistic about this. There is actual scientific evidence to support the fact that the brain is adaptable, even in adulthood:
Ideally more and more people will come to understand that managers can help create healthy new pathways for others in terms of their emotional physical, mental, and spiritual experiences. That may seem like it’s above and beyond, but in reality this shift is good for people and good for business. When people feel supported in living great lives (not just great work lives), they bring that energy back to work. That energy translates into more innovation, increased revenue, and enduring high-performance cultures.
To know how to support the success of each individual employee, managers must have key conversations with their employees on a regular basis. From the employee perspective, questions provide an opportunity to self-reflect weekly on successes and challenges. They can stay focused on key objectives, plan their week, get regular feedback on their own performance, and voice issues and obstacles.
When managers ask pointed questions, they quickly uncover challenges and risks. They can either jump in heavily with help or give a light touch so that employees can get the job done, while still pushing their edges and evolving in their roles. People need to have just enough challenge to not be bored but not so much that they are overly-stressed and frustrated.
The greatest managers become mentors who are supportive of employee growth and facilitate improved performance over time. Through the regular recurring process of asking questions and providing feedback and support, trust and relationships deepen — the foundation of any high performing team.
In an oppressive workplace environment everyone suffers. Micromanagement, abusive language, threats of termination, and overwork all take their toll on people. The best of them will probably look for jobs elsewhere, and everyone who remains will give just enough effort so that their manager will leave them alone. Who wants that?
In safe work-spaces everything is different. Employees share more than just what they are working on, they discuss their personal goals and issues from the outside that may be impacting performance.
While we can’t turn a closed-minded organization into an open, results driven culture, we do aspire to help organizations work their way towards a healthier, more open and ultimately more productive culture. We fully support managers in learning new ways to inspire greatness in their employees through their own self-reflection, and through a commitment to learning ways to mentor and call forth the best in others.
Success looks different to every team and every organization but we believe that the true path to success is to support people in thriving at work, living great lives, and stepping into better versions of themselves. If you have great people and support them in learning & growth, you’ll have a better chance of succeeding.
We are committed to your success and offer this blog as a resource to help you achieve it:
– “How To” posts that profile the success stories of the most innovative and fastest growing companies.
– New feature spotlights of our product. Using the power of inquiry and questions in new ways to build trusted relationships between peers and managers/employees.
– A look inside the 15Five culture. What works for us and what didn’t, and insights on how we create the space for our team to thrive.
These posts will often be accompanied by the latest research regarding communication rhythms, goal setting and tracking, accountability, organizational health, and mindfulness so that you can create and maintain teams and businesses that thrive.
Never miss out on valuable content for your business. If you haven’t subscribed, be sure to do so now. We would love to grow our community of fully actualized professionals who desire to create extraordinary value for their employees and customers, and work alongside a vibrant and lit up group of colleagues who are committed to doing great work and living great lives.