Leadership, Love and Compassion in the Home and Workplace

We hear about Boundaries and Leadership, Boundaries and Work and being a firm leader. But we don’t always hear about love, affection, and compassion in the workplace. We do hear about love and compassion with family and yet we’re sometimes so busy running our lives we don’t stop to remember how important they are in the home.
  New Life
Here are some hints for both our living place and our work place that can create much better organizational culture whether you’re leading toddlers in an effort to get better at picking up toys or your staff to pick up the pace on a project.
 New Life
Trust. Showing love (affection) and compassion in leadership builds trust. Your staff or family members know they have a safety net. They won’t be shamed, blamed or rejected when they make a mistake. This builds trust and acts against risk adversity, thereby promoting adventure, creativity and growth.
Compassion allows for latent learning to become manifest behavior.  Lab animals in learning facilities will sometimes stall on doing behavior they should be able to do. But if scientists show compassion, so to speak, and wait, while being diligent in encouraging them to perform, the animal will eventually get it and start to do the task. What is happening is that all the time the animal is not performing, they are busy learning inside (latent learning) but not showing the behavior. That comes later through diligence on the part of both scientist and rat. Finally the scientist will observe the animal performing and that is manifest learning or manifest behavior. Can we wait for true learning to occur?
 New Life
Love and compassion allows for experimentation on both the part of the leader and the follower. If you give grace and space to a new employee you may find that they find another way of doing things and or a creative solution that no one has ever thought of. Somebody gave a scientist at 3M the space to experiment with a low-level sticky glue and Post-Its were born.
 New Life
Love and affection creates unity in the group culture. Love tends to trickle down at home and at work. Nucor Steel is famous for its culture of love and compassion. Jim Collins reports, in his book Good To Great, that employees there can be very emotional about their loyalty to the company. Children who see love between their parents while experiencing it directly from both parents tend to internalize a great deal of security and self-confidence.
 New Life
A lack of love blocks evaluation and creates judgment. When staff or family members think they will be blamed, shamed and or judged for problems or mistakes their hearts will take flight. This is still true even if you see outward compliance. This atmosphere of blame and shame can be created because of at least two dysfunctional types of messages. For example:
a)  “You’re responsible for how I feel because you messed up.”
b)  “You’re an all-bad person because you messed up this assignment/chore or etc.”
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Love and compassion also checks our entitlement as leaders and evaluates our expectations. It’s important to set expectations and have healthy desire for things to be a certain way for the good of the whole group. Where we get off track is having too high or inappropriate expectations or entitlement that misses reality and is insensitive to the people around us. (See The Entitlement Cure by John Townsend). Love can help us slow down and look at our own stuff before we get all frustrated.
  New Life
How will you be more loving, affectionate and compassionate at work this next week?? What good habit can you start over the next month that will show more love, affection and compassion at work or at home?  Can you give more grace, more space and less blame and shame at work and home? Try it! You should see a shift in you and others!

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