One of my clients sent me this poster last week. It’s joined How to work better on my wall of inspiration and I’ve been thinking about it ever since.
Most of us want to bring out the best in people, whether that’s at work or in life. Some of us will have had the pleasure of knowing and working with people who we feel bring out the best in us. Several of my coaching clients bring the issue of how to get the best from their teams to our sessions.
What I liked about this poster was the fact it suggested that bringing out the good in people requires us to be good first. My clients and I have come up with the following list of some ways in which we can both be good and bring out good in others.
Let other people thrive
You’ve probably met someone who just has to be the first/cleverest/most innovative/most creative/simply the best in a meeting. Sadly, this seems to have the effect of draining all the energy from the room as others sit back and watch the display, like a peacock showing his plumage to attract a mate. Sometimes it’s done with the best of intentions but the end result is often the same – disengaged people who can’t be bothered.
If we can set aside our own desire to look good and instead work on being good, we’ll challenge and encourage our colleagues to contribute and maximise all that talent to achieve the best outcome.
Create a safe environment in which to take risks
If we always do what we’ve always done, we’ll always get what we always got. If we want to encourage innovation, we have to be prepared for the potential results. Like a safety net under a trapeze, we need to make it safe for people to try, to practice and even to fail sometimes.
Demonstrate what it means to be good
‘Do what I say and not what I do’ is not a strategy which brings out the best in people very often. I don’t think there’s any more to be said about that!
Praise where praise is due
One of my clients noticed that he only ever gave corrective feedback and didn’t give praise. He set himself a challenge to only give specific, constructive and positive feedback for a week. His team noticed and they liked it. He now makes sure that his feedback is balanced and authentic.
Those are just a few ways in which we can try to be good people and bring out the good in people.
Today’s pebble for your consideration: what will you do this week to both be good and to bring out the good in people?
What do you think?
Turning over pebbles is the blog of Thinking Space Coaching.
If you’d like to make progress in your work and life, why not email me to see how we could work together?