I recall a team leader who led a team that consistently out-performed the other teams. On paper, all teams were identical. They had the same number of team members, the same training, and the same equipment, however this team always excelled.
Every day regardless of his workload, this particular team leader would make the time to walk the floor. He would visit the members of his team, and rather than tell them what they could be doing better, or what they could do for him, he would ask them how they were doing, how their family was doing, and what could he do to make their job easier. He encouraged professional development and regularly organised team building activities to strengthen their sense of team.
This team leader taught me that leading others is much more than just technical skills or time in the organisation. That it’s more about the human side of leadership and our ability to connect with people and build positive, trust-based relationships.
By prioritising ‘walking the floor’, team building, and professional development, his actions demonstrated that he valued his people. When people know that their leaders value them, they are more likely to engage and go the extra mile. Not because they have to, but because they choose to.