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R+ is about Relationships

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R+ is about relationships.

-Dr. Aubrey Daniels

Saying hello doesn’t have an ROI.

It’s about building relationships.

-Gary Vaynerchuck

These might seem like ‘soft’ ideas to some people, but I’d argue that they tell us a lot about human behavior. 

Given how busy we are and how lofty and aggressive our goals might be, it is easy to forget that everything we do as leaders is done through people (ourselves and others, too) and for other people.

That means relationships between those people are key. It’s somewhat of an illusion to think that people work hard because that’s what we pay them for.

Others might think it is unethical to develop relationships at work. Of course, the relationships need to be professional and within ethical boundaries…

…but using this as an excuse not to talk to and take an interest in them as people certainly won’t win their trust.

How do we help leaders translate these ideas into actions? Here are three practices that I have seen leaders work on to improve their work relationships. I’ve written other posts on this topic too.

Asking high-quality questions. Data suggest that people who ask open-ended questions that are curious and then listen intently to your responses…

…are more likable

…are perceived as more competent, and

…learn more than their peers who ask fewer questions

Behavioral integrity. Doing what you say you will do. If you calculated it, what would be your integrity score this week? Think back and see how many of your promises or commitments (even the small ones) you kept or did not keep. Leaders whose teams believe they have high behavioral integrity…

…are trusted more

…are seen as more competent, and

…have teams who are more likely to go above and beyond when asked to do something

To learn more, check out my post on this topic and my short video.

Asking for feedback.  Studies show that leaders who ask their teams for feedback on ideas, or better yet, on their own behavior…

…are seen as more effective, and 

…they have more engaged teams.

Here is a short post on feedback to dive deeper.

These ideas and others are covered in my new #1 ranked best-selling book, available on Amazon.

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