Here’s how to CARE for your employees WHILE keeping it PROFESSIONAL…

by | Mar 8, 2022

Many of us as leaders realize that our employees are whole people, and that in order for them to make their highest and most fulfilling contribution to our organization, they must bring their whole selves—not just their “professional” selves.

But we also realize that there are legal boundaries put in place to protect employees and organizations—after all, it IS business.

So, how do we show our people that we truly VALUE them as PEOPLE? How do we make space for the WHOLE person while also honoring appropriate boundaries?

Here are TWO places to start…

1)    Connect by communicating—and ask open-ended questions. Obviously, we don’t want to pressure our team members to share more than they’re comfortable with, but it’s important to build rapport by inviting discussions that drift away from work topics occasionally.

After all, we’re human, and we connect with each other on a human level. When you can, ask questions that don’t lead to a “Yes” or “No” answer, and also don’t make people feel forced to answer.

Here’s an example…

DID YOU HAVE A GOOD WEEKEND? (Not quite what we’re going for. They may just answer “yes” or “no,” and the conversation probably won’t progress much further.)

WHAT DID YOU DO THIS WEEKEND? (Yikes! They may not want you to know! This may be a bit uncomfortable.)

HOW WAS YOUR WEEKEND? (Yes! This gives them the CHOICE to share what they want to, and INVITES them to share not just factual information about their lives but also about emotional wellbeing.)

2)    Show appreciation. The reality that people need to feel appreciated is massively overlooked in business. Now, this doesn’t mean flattery—people can smell flattery and manipulation a mile away. It DOES mean genuine gratitude for someone’s contribution, idea, question, action, or effort.

When you feel appreciative toward someone on your team, simply take the extra step to express that to them. Not only does it build trust with that person, but it also builds confidence because it reinforces and validates their successes.

In our Coach Approach to Leadership, we equip leaders with the mindset and skillset of a coach. This allows leaders to connect more deeply with their team members, while still respecting the appropriate boundaries.