Many years ago, I worked at an organization that had horrible morale. To make matters worse, my boss was oblivious and even indifferent to the workplace culture. Despite his lack of interest in the culture, he was open to my starting a weekly prayer meeting at the office.
I invited anyone and everyone on the staff to participate. I didn’t expect many people to join me, but Joe and Tom did. Sometimes only two of us showed up for prayer, but more often than not the three of us were there.
Long after we started praying together, Tom surprised me one day. He said, “I know the only reason that I have been able to make it through is because of our prayers.” He directly attributed that small prayer gathering to giving him the peace to survive the toxic work environment. Things at work didn’t seem to change that much. But Tom, Joe, and I were changed. And that helped to change the morale of the workplace—at least from our perspective.
Even if you are not the one in charge, you can make a difference—because you can choose to do something. If you are willing to put the needs of the team ahead of yourself, people will ultimately look to you as a leader—because you are already leading.
Here are three ways that you can improve morale even if you are not the boss.
In my interview with John Ramstead and Sandra Crawford Willamson on the Eternal Leadership Podcast, I shared the principles I wrote about in my book, Dear Boss: What Your Employees Wish You Knew.
What you’ll learn in this interview:
- How to mix faith into the workplace without being pushy
- How to create a transformational impact on the people who work for us
- The “lost skill” that one needs to develop in order to lead effectively
- Why it’s important to “think about what we’re thinking about”
- How to gain and earn your team’s trust
- How to create your organization’s culture
||October 17, 2018
||How to Be the Best Boss on Eternal Leadership Podcast
What words do you think of when you think of business? Do you think of words like money, performance, results, control, and fear? Or do you think of words like honor, team, relationship, connection, and fun? Most likely you associate business with the first list of words. But if Bob Hasson and Danny Silk have their way, you will link business with the second list of words.
Hasson and Silk have co-written a seminal work with The Business of Honor. As soon as I saw the promotional information his publicist sent me about the book, I knew that I had to read it. I had high expectations about this book, and I was not disappointed. Whether you are a business leader, a ministry leader, or a leader in your home, you will benefit from reading this book.
After reading The Business of Honor, I had the opportunity to interview Bob Hasson. Here are excerpts from the interview, complemented by my thoughts.
On June 14, ABC7 News Anchor Melanie Hastings and Molly Cochran interviewed me on “Let’s Talk LIVE” on News Channel 8, the D.C. metro area’s only 24-hour cable news channel, devoted to the latest in the District, Maryland and Virginia. They asked me questions about my book, Dear Boss: What Your Employees Wish You Knew, and about ways to improve the workplace.
The “Let’s Talk LIVE” interview lasts a quick six minutes (6:16). I hope you enjoy it. And I’d love to know your thoughts about it!
||June 14, 2018
||Boss Improvement Tips on WJLA-TV
My family recently hosted a foreign exchange student at our house for about a month. When he arrived at our house, his first question to me was “What are the rules at your house?” Not wanting to sound like some kind of ogre, I said, “We don’t have too many rules at our house.” And I told him a couple of rules that we had in our house. And I thought that was that.
Over time, I noticed that he did some things that annoyed me. And my thought was “That’s really rude. Why doesn’t he know any better?”
I told him that I was disappointed with what he was doing. Later he told me, “You didn’t tell me what all the rules were.” Then I realized I couldn’t hold him accountable for something I didn’t tell him. He had asked to know what the rules were, but I didn’t tell him what they all were.
This same thing applies to your employees at your workplace, but they won’t necessarily ask you what the rules of your culture are. That’s incumbent on you to tell them. They won’t know how to operate in your organizational culture if you don’t tell them.
Here are the things you need to tell your people so they know how to follow the rules of your culture.
The best way to win respect from your team is to put them before yourself. In order to be respected by your team, be respectful of your team.
When you are willing to respect your team for who they are—not for what they can do for you—they will appreciate you for who are. People don’t care how much you know until they know much you care.
Here are three practical ways to show respect to your team—and win respect from your team in the process.
Vision is a key ingredient for creating culture at any organization. Having vision is about seeing things that others don’t see and being able to paint the picture in a way that they can see.
It is imperative for a leader to know where to lead the organization. And in the process of setting that direction, many other pieces come together as a result—because it is often the intangibles that make the difference in setting the tone.
Here are five ways that you can use vision to create culture.
Harry Truman said, “It is amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit.” If it’s all about you, then you won’t get much done. But if you are willing to share the credit with others, then you will end up getting a lot done.
People want to be part of something larger than themselves. When they feel like they are contributing and seeing progress, then they are more likely to want to stay at it. But a leader who doesn’t see the team’s need to be recognized will lose their team very quickly.
Here are three things to implement a team culture by focusing on giving credit to others on the team.
I have a relative whose job at one time was to find all the problems with all the big equipment the company was trying to design. In effect, he had to expose all the design flaws in what the designers were trying to build and show why it would not work. From an economic perspective, it was important for him to find why it wouldn’t work out before they would actually start building it. From a safety perspective, it was important for them not to create something that would end up malfunctioning. As a result of faithfully doing his job, he got tagged with the nickname of “Dr. No” because of his default answer.
As a leader, you are tugged in different directions all the time. Some people want you to do one thing, and others want you to do something else. You are constantly being asked to do things that are outside the scope of your focus. And your default answer must be “no.”
It’s not easy saying “no.” But that’s why you’re the leader. It’s important for you to focus on where you know you need to go. You can’t do what others will suggest most of the time. That’s why you have to be prepared to say “no” most of the time.
There are three reasons why your default answer must be “no.”
Danny Yamashiro aired an interview with me this month on his radio program, The Good Life—the most listened to Christian radio talk show in Hawaii.
Danny asked me about my new book, Dear Boss: What Your Employees Wish You Knew. He asked me about who would benefit from the book. He asked me about how it can be a business book and a Christian book at the same time. And he asked me why I wrote the book. It was a great interview, and I had a lot of fun.
Danny has a powerful story. I interviewed him a while back. Listen to his inspiring interview—How Do You Make Sense of Life When Tragedy Strikes?
I hope you enjoy Danny’s interview with me about my book!
||March 2, 2018
||Dear Boss Radio Interview on The Good Life Hawaii
||The Good Life Hawaii Radio Show