Take care of the little things

Welcoming a new employee creates an impression not only for that person but also for your current employees. It’s an opportunity you won’t want to miss.

Delicious Chocolate CakeRecently I welcomed a new employee with an afternoon cake break. Everyone from the Branch was invited, along with others with whom this employee was likely to interact. I’ll confess I neither ordered nor brought the cake and plates, but I did cut and serve it to everyone. And I was pleasantly surprised at the impact that simple gesture made, evidenced by comments from those in attendance. Not only had an executive taken time from a busy schedule but rolled up her sleeves to be the hostess.

A simple gesture makes a big impact.

Lisa Shelley reminds us in her article that leadership is a social business. A great leader is interested in and believes in people. A great leader is inspired by their people. Leadership is more than delivering outcomes. The message you visibly deliver to your staff is a strong measure of leadership.

The culture of your work environment is not the mantra posted on the wall. It is seen and felt by staff through your behaviours and the behaviours that you and other leaders tolerate. Positive work environments grow from positive relationships. Positive relationships are premised on trust.

Shala Marks understood the little things in her article “7 ways to build trust in your team”. Not surprisingly, her advice described the behaviours of a leader doing the little things:

  1. Every new manager should lead by example.
  2. Follow through with your commitments.
  3. Support the staff under you.
  4. Have an open-door policy.
  5. Be transparent when necessary.
  6. Recognize those on your team.
  7. Respect your employees.

So how do you measure your leadership success? Is it measured in deliverables and outcomes? Or is it also measured by employee satisfaction, engagement, advancement and retention?

Cultivate trust. Make time in your day to practice the little things. You and your organization will be rewarded in spades.