At the L2 Learn Lead Simulcast, Tim Sanders said, “The most compassionate thing we can do as leaders is to listen without power.” Everyone in an organization can point their finger at the leader. We all were hired by someone at some point. I say this to say that, as a leader, you don’t have to remind people of your position. Therefore, when you are sitting with an employee or with your team, remember to listen to them. I mean really listen. Listen without your power or your authority. Listen with curiosity. Listen and be ready to learn. Listen because you genuinely care. A leader that has placed their authority on the shelf and come ready to listen with care, is a leader that builds influence.
Lasting leadership will be gained when you are able to lead by your actions, not your position. We all know people that have been handed promotions, but can not lead a team well. They may be masters at completing their assigned tasks, but they have no concept of leading others well. Don’t fall into that category. Begin practicing caring for others. Find value in your team. When your heart changes to become others focused, it will shine through your actions. You will begin to listen to others for their benefit not your own.
I want you to consider the leaders you have had in life. Picture employers, teachers, or even church leaders. Now picture that they all listened to what you had to say without the use of their position. Listening like that almost sounds like utopia. We don’t see a lot of leadership today that cares more about others than they do themselves. It’s crazy because we all know that we all would like to have a leader that genuinely listens. We all will follow someone that cares.