Leaders have more ways to communicate than ever before. They are surrounded all day long with information. At any time you can access anything you need in the digital world.
But, are we personally connected anymore? I’m amazed at the number of people communicating on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and blogs. All day long I see people (myself included) with their heads down looking at a screen. They are either texting, tweeting or emailing with their device of choice. The day continues to move. People pass by and we miss opportunities to personally connect for the sake of communicating.
How much time do you spend communicating through social media rather than connecting through personal relationships? Sure, you can reach more people and “communicate” through social media, but do you “CONNECT”?
Leaders need to spend a lot more time personally connecting. Just because you have a larger platform doesn’t mean you have better dialogue.
Social media is a powerful tool and a great way to communicate, but it should not take the place of personally connecting with your team.
7 Ways Leaders Can Personally Connect
- Get engaged and addicted to leading by wandering around (LBWA). Stay in touch with your people. Visit with them, see how they are doing and find out what you can do to help. Find out what you have in common with others, search for that common ground.
- Leave appointments for the doctor’s office. Make sure your door is always open. Make it easy and comfortable for your people to connect with you. A closed-door policy makes it difficult to connect and communicate.
- Focus on helping other people. Focus your energy and time on helping other people. Have a “yes” attitude. What can you do to help someone? Simplify as much as possible. People don’t like complicated things. Keep it simple and people will connect.
- Inspire and motivate others. Be a positive example. Inspire and motivate people through your work ethic, stories and willingness to connect with them where they are. Value their work and opinions. Don’t judge. Teach them to lead. Relate to them, don’t just communicate to them.
- Touch hearts and transform. Great leaders know how to connect with people and touch their hearts and transform them in some way. Your goal should be for people to feel encouraged after you’ve spent time with them.
- Practice what you preach. Don’t say one thing and do another. Live what you communicate. Be an example. You won’t connect as a leader if people see you doing the opposite of what you preach.
- Empathy. Connect with others’ reality and aspirations. ”Walk in their shoes”!
What can you do to improve the way you personally connect with the people you lead?