Management responsibilities, what are they?

management responsibilities, what are they?

In one of my first classes of my master’s degree, I learned the management responsibilities or functions.  The professor indicated that management consist of four general obligations.  Those are planning, organizing, leading, and controlling.  However, the explanation failed to include the responsibilities of a leader from the continuous improvement lenses.

Planning as the number one responsibility

There is no doubt that planning is one of the most recognized functions of an entrepreneur or manager.  Planning should start with grasping the situation. Hence, define the problem or describe the desired state is the first step before start planning.  The following steps are to define the gap, create strategies, set objectives, and determine resources.  

In continuous improvement, planning entails the same things.  Perhaps, the method used is different because it involves people from different levels of the organization.  Strategy deployment addresses critical business needs by aligning goals, strategy and the company’s resources at all levels.  Moreover, it develops the skills and capabilities of the team.  It does so by engaging them to answer the question of how do we get there? Leaders guide their teams using their experience and PDCA.  The use of the PDCA cycle provides a framework to identify potential problems and countermeasures.  

Management responsibilities organizing and staffing

In a traditional enterprise, managers would design jobs, specify tasks, and allocate resources.  They would also create an organizational structure and set policies and procedures.  All that is still true in a continuous improvement environment.  However, there are a couple of differences in how to achieve those tasks.

In a CI culture, managers are also teachers.  Their main job is to develop themselves and develop their staff.  One way to do it is by teaching them how to manage the daily activities.  For instance, daily coordination activities, allocate resources, daily problem-solving, and standards creation.  Managers oversee and support supervisors and middle managers.  Support means teaching them how to do it and provide the resources.  It also means to listen to their concerns and help with high-level decisions.  Set them for success by establishing clear rules and limits, so they know when to escalate the problem or situation.

Leading and controlling, two more management responsibilities

While creating strategy, leaders set direction and provide a purpose.  Those tasks are critical to lead and motivate employees to accomplish organizational goals.  In addition, effective communication and clear rules to manage change and conflicts are also fundamental.  Some of those conflicts are related to employee performance.  In a traditional culture, controlling refers to measure performance and compare it to standards.  Also, this responsibility includes taking the appropriate steps as per the performance level.  That is recognition, salary increase, promotion, training, or a development plan to take care of weaknesses or inefficiencies.  

In a traditional setting, leading and controlling are seen as two different things, but in CI, they are part of one.  Leadership in a CI culture lead by example, teaching and coaching their staff while visiting the work area every day.  They motivate by providing learning experiences and challenging the team to be the best they can be.  Performance assessment is part of the development process.  However, it is focused on employee development, not a way to punish low performance.

What are the responsibilities of a manager, business owner, or entrepreneur?

Management’s job is to help the staff to do better by providing purpose and direction while supporting the daily activities.  In other words, managers should be servant leaders first, and everything else, second.

The daily activities should be the responsibility of the supervisors and their teams, including daily improvements.  Managers support their direct reports by listening and learning from them what help they need.  Then, they can allocate the resources, make high-level decisions, or remove barriers. 

When leadership does not respect their staff, it will command instructions and control their actions. In a continuous improvement culture, respect for humanity is a tenet.  Therefore, command and control are not a way to fulfill management responsibilities.  Most importantly, that behavior should be identified as non-acceptable and banned from the culture.

How companies show they care?

how companies show they care about its employees

Ask any company leader what their most important asset is, and they will answer the same, their employees.  But is that true or just the convenient collective answer?  If it is true, then words are translated into daily actions.  Companies show they care about their employees with actions, not fancy statements or values hanging on the walls.  

The best way to show a company cares about its employees is to build a culture of respect, trust, inclusion, and collaboration.  That is an environment where all members feel valued and trust to share their ideas without fear. Moreover, it is a place where leaders listen and take time to know the person behind the position.  Also, leaders would take time to develop their skills and help them to reach their potential.

Some ways companies show they care

Although nothing beats those things, it will not hurt if companies offer good benefits.  Leaders and companies committed to making their team a priority take the time to put together an attractive benefits package.

We all heard regarding companies that provide food and snacks services for free, video games, ping-pong tables, and more.  Those perks sound nice but are they what their employees want? A different option is to take the time to know what their employees’ value or need to craft a nice set of benefits.

Ways to show you care about their well-being

It is quite common to offer wellness programs as part of the benefits.  Examples of those programs are on-site weight management, high blood pressure or diabetes clinics, and gym subscriptions.  Unfortunately, sometimes those are offered by companies that show no respect for their employees’ health.  Ensure that your company does not foster or accept attitudes and behaviors that create a toxic environment.  Also, promote adequate rest, ask your team to take their time off.

Align perks, culture, and values to create a positive environment that fosters creativity and well-being.  The following examples are ways to show that you care about the person behind the position.

  • Give new parents time to be home
  • Encourage healthy behaviors by providing options for healthy foods.  Revise what kind of snacks you offer in the vending machines.  Do they match your health message?
  • Promote doing exercise with internal tournaments of popular sports like basketball or baseball.
  • Advertise ways to relax during their breaks while encouraging learning and skills development.  For example, create a small library with magazines and books.  The library can be a corner with comfy chairs, adequate lighting, and a bookshelf.
  • Promote using stand-up desks or converters.
  • Create a walking path around the building for your employees to walk during their breaks.  If there is enough space, a small garden would be nice too!

Give back to the community

Another way to make your employees feel appreciated is by showing respect and care for their communities.  Once again, align these programs with your company values.  Above all, align them with your actions.  For instance, do not say your company cares about the environment and then dump toxic waste down the creek.

  • Encourage volunteerism with days off
  • Help them help the community by creating teams to participate in efforts to participate in non-profit activities.
  • Promote and actively participate in recycling efforts.
  • Team-up with local companies and provide discounts for buying solar panels or other types of sustainable energy.

When companies show they care, great things happen

Caring for your employees is a way to show respect.  Employee appreciation is the right thing to do.  Also, it is good for the business.  Employees that feel appreciated by their leaders are more engaged and productive.  When they perceive that they can grow professionally and build meaningful relationships, their job satisfaction will be higher.  Therefore, they will be willing to contribute to the well-being of the company.

Trust, how do you build it in the workplace?

To build trust in the workplace is critical to keep your promises.
Gaining someone’s trust is not easy, do not do anything that risks losing it.

In my last post, I was talking about empowerment.  I indicated that if you empower your employees, you need to trust them. But trust is a two-way street, you trust your employees, and they must trust you back.  How do you build that trust?

5 ways to build trust in the workplace

1.  Be honest and with integrity no matter the circumstances

There is no doubt that it is hard, to be honest, and act with integrity all the time.  Regardless of how hard or inconvenient it might be, it is critical for being a trustworthy person.  Consequently, admit when you don’t know and take responsibility for your failures.  

Be transparent, accept if you are wrong, and be open about your emotions.  For example, concede that you are angry about the outcome and ask for time for reflection before talking about the matter.  Showing vulnerability is not showing weakness but rather that you are human too.  

Also, always communicate your reasons to do something and list your expectations.  Do not hide information, be transparent instead.  

2.  Show respect and listen to what others have to say

The most basic form of respect is to listen.  Let people talk, focus on the person, and listen with the intention of understanding.  Ask for clarification to fully understand ideas, concerns, or feelings.  Then, respond with empathy and give feedback respectfully.  Show your team that you genuinely care about them. 

Another way to show respect is to be mindful of your demeanor.  Be aware of your reactions.  For example, don’t laugh or make fun of peoples’ comments.  Likewise, do not dismiss their ideas.  Your job is to coach and teach them.  Remember that not everybody learns or analyze things at the same pace or the same way.  Getting to know the person behind each employee, that is the best way to be able to help them.

3.  Think before you act

It takes time to build trust.  Therefore, the last thing you want to happen is to do something that breaks that trust.  Take time to think about how you are going to answer, make decisions carefully.  However, do not take too much time.  

Be consistent with your actions, treat everybody the same way, and act with integrity at all times. While making decisions, think about your values.  How do they align with your values?  Always, especially during hard times, respond as per your values.  

4.  Keep your promises

Once you tell someone that you will do something for them, do what you say you would.  Honor your commitments and don’t make promises you can’t keep.  If you meant to do something, do it.  If the outcome of your actions is not what the person is expecting to hear, say it anyway.  Be honest about the reasons and offer an alternative solution.

5.  Support your employees

Have their back at all times, never let anybody to bully or disrespect any person.  Your team needs to know that you are there for them always.  Create a trusted environment where they feel good about sharing their ideas and concerns.  As indicated before, a safe setting where they learn and test their opinion without fear of losing their jobs.  Provide feedback and guidance without judging but showing compassion and empathy.

Key Points to build confidence

Give trust to get trust, be the adult in the room, and extent the olive branch first.  Gaining the confidence of someone is not an easy task.  Therefore, take small steps by inviting the person to participate in a continuous improvement event, brainstorming session, or project with you.   

Model those behaviors that you want to promote by respecting everybody, keeping your word, and being transparent.  Participate with your team in the continuous improvement and problem-solving processes without trying to micro-manage.  Instead of controlling the situation, coach, and give constructive feedback.

Empowerment, what it is and how you do it?

Empower your employees to take over the improvement of their work.
Empowered employees take over problem-solving and process improvement of their workplace.

Empowerment through coaching and skills development is a powerful way to show respect to your team.  When leadership walks away from command-and-control management, they start to empower their team to take control of their work.  As servant leaders, supervisors and managers listen more, ask questions to understand, and take away barriers.  

What is empowerment?

Merriam-Webster defined empowerment as the act or action of empowering someone or something, the granting of the power, right, or authority to perform various acts or duties.  In business, it means to share information and some level of power with the employees to make decisions.  Likewise, it delegates some tasks like problem-solving and improvements at the workspace level.  As a result, it also comes with more responsibility and accountability.

At Barry-Wehmiller, they refer to empowerment as responsible freedom.  Bob Chapman talked about it in his post, “Trust: Better to give than receive“.  He indicated that responsible freedom summarizes two ideas, freedom and responsibility.  Freedom is the opportunity to exercise personal choice, to have ownership of the work that you do and the decisions you make.  Responsibility is to ensure to be careful and exercise concern for other people and the requirements of the organization while making decisions.

Empowerment Requirements

But give power or authorization does no good if leadership doesn’t fulfill some requirements first. Employee empowerment requires the following.

  • Trust they will do their best
  • Training in the skills necessary to carry out the new tasks
  • Coach them how to use the new skills and model the behaviors associated with them
  • Provide all required information or grant access to it
  • Encourage testing new ideas and assist with guidance and resources

How do you entitle your team with more power and control?

Empowerment means people have power and control over their daily work.  With this new power and control, they gain knowledge and trust in their capabilities.  Similarly, they feel more engaged with their work and happier when they come back home. 

As leaders, we need to watch out for our team’s needs.  Not everybody learns at the same pace or the same way.  The support they need on this new endeavor is not the same either.  Some people need more help than others. 

If you empower them, you need to trust and support them.  Respect your team by providing adequate support.  Visit the workplace often, talk with your employees and listen to their concerns.  Ask how you can help and do what you said you would do.  Equally important is to provide support.  No idea is a bad idea.  Respectfully ask questions to guide them.  Challenge the situation or the method, never the person.  Create a safe environment where the team is not afraid of sharing their ideas, try them, or fail.  After all, in continuous improvement, you win, or you learn!

Bored employees, is your team part of them?

Boredom in the workplace

Do you have bored employees? How often you hear your kids saying they are bored?  All the time, right?  Not only do kids get bored, adults too. Often, they don’t say it. However, their actions are a reflection of it.  

The 2016 Workplace Boredom Study by Udemy for Business indicated that 43% of US office employees are bored. Moreover, they mentioned that boredom is a leading indicator of disengagement.  What are the causes of boredom?  What can you do to fight against it? 

Why people get bored? 

Monotony is probably the most known cause of boredom. Repetition or lack of interest in a task cause boredom. Personality and personal traits determine how well people react to boredom. Some people need more novelty or variety than others. Therefore, they have a higher risk of apathy. Besides, people with attention problems also tend to boredom.

Lack of flow is another cause of boredom. Shahram Heshmat, in a 2017 post in Psychology Today, talked about task flow. He indicated that flow occurs when a person’s skills match the environmental challenges. It also happens when a task includes clear goals and immediate feedback.

Reasons for workplace boredom

The top two reasons why employees feel bored at work are lack of opportunities to learn new skills and unchallenging work.

The Udemy study that I mentioned before noted as a takeaway the following. “The biggest driver of engagement is an employee’s personal view of their future. Today’s workers desire to be more involved in shaping their own experience in the workplace. Business and HR leaders must help people envision their future career and learning path in order to effectively engage them“.  

This is how you can fight boredom in the workplace.

Doesn’t that Udemy takeaway, remember you the continuous improvement tenet Respect for People? As servant leaders, our job is to create a culture of respect. Within it, we help the team to flourish and be what they can be. You do so by providing opportunities to develop their skills and get better jobs.

Empower your team to take control of their tasks and workplace. Do it by facilitating and supporting collaboration, learning, and personal development.  Provide a learning environment where employees feel comfortable exploring and testing new things. Finding ways to do their job and improve their work conditions becomes a challenge. Therefore, they have a focus, a purpose, or a challenge that keeps them engaged.  

Take time to know each person in your team. When you do, you can recognize characteristics that make them prone to boredom. As a result, you can create individualized development plans.  Get to know your team members’ aspirations and personal goals. Also, try to encourage them to work towards their achievement.

Everybody feels boredom sometimes, but we can fight it most of the time!

Reference:

Heshmat, S. (2017, June).  Eight Reasons Why We Get Bored:  Boredom can be viewed as a crisis of desire.  [Blog post] Accessed 11.18/2020.   https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/science-choice/201706/eight-reasons-why-we-get-bored

(Udemy for Business). 2016 Udemy Workplace Boredom Study.  Accessed 11/18/2020.  https://research.udemy.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/2016-Udemy-Workplace-Boredom-Study.pdf

How do you build a new habit?

Every New Year, millions of people around the world make new year resolutions. They pledge to build a new habit. It can be to lose weight, stop smoking or learn a new skill. Perhaps, in your business or workplace, you want to create new work habits. For example, making continuous improvement thinking, the only way to work.

How our brain reacts when building new habits

There is evidence that the brain rewards us for fast thinking by activating pleasure centers and punishes us for slow thinking by activating the pain centers.  That situation comes from the time our ancestors have to think quickly to survive the elements, animals, and other existential threats.  How do you fight against thousands of years of fast responses?  

How to build a new habit

Years ago, I was struggling with creating the habit of exercising and started looking for information to learn how to form that habit.  I found that the formation of every habit has three steps, a trigger, the routine, and the reward.

The trigger starts the process or habit you are pursuing.  It can be a place, a feeling or emotion, time of the day, or a reminder in your calendar.  If you are going to do something effortlessly, without thinking about it, your brain needs to know what the reward will be.  For our ancestors, the prize was survival.  The reward can be a feeling, like the satisfaction of helping others, winning, learning, getting one step closer to a goal, or whatever makes you feel happy or good.  The reward must be something that you crave, something that you want to repeat.

After you figure out the trigger and the reward, it is time to create the new routine or behavior that you want to become a habit.  The trigger will remind you that it is time to follow the action you want to pursue. 

Does this work?

This analysis and the process that follows make sense for me. When I reflected on it, I realize that I unconsciously follow it. As a production planner, I could not visit the production floor on most days. I knew that the only way to find out why we could not follow the schedule was by observing what was going on and talking with the right people. I force myself to go it by blocking time in my calendar. The notification was the trigger I need it to stop what I was doing and go. I didn’t know it, but I was creating a habit.

Helping your team to build a new habit

To help your team to build self-discipline, you have to create some habits for yourself, like going to gemba every day or take time for daily coaching.  When your team sees that you are creating habits they will feel compelled to do the same.  Make sure that you are consistent, do not fail yourself or the team by not following your daily routines.  Building habits to change old behaviors takes a lot of discipline, focus, and more than a couple of months of practice.  Of course, this short analysis can also help you with your new year resolutions.

Show they matter, give the gift of giving.

Although it should happen all the time, during the holidays, it is more common. We show the people we love that they matter. But this Christmas season is like no other. Many things that we take for granted our entire lives are now challenging, scarce, or even non-existent. One of them is traveling to see our family. Despite the health situation, you can still travel following the appropriate precautions. Some people will choose not to travel to avoid health complications to their loved ones. But this does not mean that we have to be isolated or not have meaningful communication with the people we love and appreciate.

Feeling connected

Many people have a hard time feeling connected.  It happens with our family, friends, and the workplace.  The continuous improvement tenet of servant leadership is a universal concept that does not have to live inside a workplace. It can and should be how we express kindness and respect everywhere.

The following are different ways we can check-in with our family, friends, and colleagues to make them feel connected, and seen.

Show they matter, be present

One of the best ways to show people they matter is to be present.  If you are lucky enough to have the chance to visit and spend face to face time with your love ones, be mindful of that privilege.  Do now wasted spending time on your phone browsing through social media.  But if you won’t spend face to face time, you can plan for virtual events or a phone call. 

Sometimes we don’t reach out to people only because they haven’t reach out to us in a while.  Many things happen in life, we don’t know the reasons why this happened, but if you care about this person, it does not care.  Take the phone, call or send a text, or a message through any of the available messaging systems.  Or why not? a written note.  Send a postal card, or an old fashion letter.  If this is too old for you, then an email, but reach out.

Acknowledge their feelings 

Every year, we have around us people that is not too happy around this period.  Most of the time happen because they lose a loved one, or a job.  This year this situation is amplified by all the fallouts from the pandemic.  Gatherings of all type may have a different taste, but it is important to acknowledge the feelings, and the fact that this too will pass.  Hope and laughter are great things to share.  And while you are in that mood, acknowledge your feelings too!  It is ok to be feeling sad, missing the celebrations as we know them, and craving for human contact.  

Seize small opportunities to connect

You don’t need a party to initiate a conversation with someone you haven’t see in a while.  Do not miss the chance to use a Facebook birthday reminder or a LinkedIn work anniversary to connect.  Sometimes a simple hello, I was thinking about you goes a long way.  

Give the gift of giving, show they matter

Create the right environment to keep a connection with the people around you. Help those in need any way you can. For example, motivate those who feel sad to enjoy life and keep fighting the good fight.  Show people you care, share what you have, be a good neighbor, friend, colleague, leader, and family member.  During the holidays and all year long, the best gift is the gift of giving.  It makes you feel good, and it makes the other person feel connected and loved.  

What is Servant Leadership?

Servant leadership focuses on the development and well-being of the people.

Many years ago, the company I was working with was getting ready for a transformation.  The hourly rate structure had too many classifications. Also, it had a great variety of job functions. I team up with the human resources team to create the new structure.  

After a detailed analysis of every function and its responsibilities, we combined some functions and created new names for them.  The HR manager suggested changing the Supervisor’s position name to Facilitators.  I did not understand why. 100% of my peers did not understand either.

Fast forward a couple of years, and now I am leading the lean implementation. During a meeting, my lean coach brought up the concept of servant leadership. It was the first time I heard about it. He explained that continuous improvement is a people-centric system. Leadership’s job is to take care of the team. Facilitate events and teach tools are a secondary job. The tools are important, but it is the people who matter, he said.

Servant leadership is a different way to do things. It is a distinctive leadership style or attitude.  A Servant Leader focuses on the development and well-being of the people.  The employees are first!  Therefore, the leader’s job is to develop more leaders by teaching, motivating, facilitating, and supporting the team.  Below are examples of how you can be a better leader.

Servant leadership and Teaching

  • With teaching and mentoring, you get people to do things that otherwise they wouldn’t. These skills and experiences change their work and their entire life.  
  • A servant leader creates the right environment for learning and building trust.
  • It also handover the tools needed to be safe and effective.  

Motivate

  • Encourage exploring new things and testing different ways to get better results.  
  • Follow-up on suggestions and ideas. Seen your ideas implemented is a powerful motivation.

Facilitate & Support

  • Facilitate and endorse collaboration between teams by promoting participation in kaizen to solve cross-functional problems.
  • Give them information, resources, and better work environments to ensure success.
  • Provide the right continuous improvement support system. For example, provide training schedules, suggestion programs, quality circles, daily improvements, and fair compensation systems.
  • Understand and support the team all the time, regardless they succeed or not. Moreover, show that in continuous improvement, you win, or you learn.  
  • Not everybody learns at the same pace, be patient and empathic. Help the team to achieve what they believe is not possible. Also, to trust their skills.

Practicing Servant Leadership

To be a servant leader, focus on the needs of others before your own. Every day, go and see what is going on for yourself. Experience the facts firsthand and listen to their concerns and ideas. Learn about them as individuals, get to know the person behind the team member. Establish a relationship with your team and create the right environment for people to flourish. Are you ready to be a servant leader? Can you understand now why the name Facilitator was not such a bad idea? I do.

Is it true that as leaders you trust, but verify?

Trust is such a contradictory feeling. We like to be trustworthy, but we are not trusting.  It happens everywhere, with all kinds of relationships.   For example, it happens with family, friendship, couples, acquaintances, and work peers. Almost every time human beings interact, there is this trust-not trust exchange in their minds.  Like any other habit, this is a hard one to break.  It has been developed upon years of lies, disappointments, and others.

To get trust, you have to freely give it.”  Bob Chapman

Learning to trust

As a long time manager in manufacturing, I learned early to trust but verify. I will trust people in their job, but I will go and check on them. The purpose was to find if they were doing what I ask. Was I trusting my people? Or was I giving instructions thinking that they will do something else? Or worse, that they don’t have the skills to figure it out on their own? Either way, I was not trusting my team. I learn that after years of learning continuous improvement.

During my childhood, I spend a lot of time with my grandfather.  We had many conversations over the years. He was trying to transfer his wisdom to me.  I did not know it back then, but he was setting the foundation for the future me.  He was trying to build a leader out of a shy and soft-spoken girl.  

Feeling trusted is a wonderful thing

There is one incident that I always remember as the day on which I learned how wonderful it feels to be trusted. Every Saturday, my grandma will take me to Bible School. While I was in class, she would visit her clients (she was a beauty products seller). But by the time school finished, she was always there waiting for me.

One day, she wasn’t. I wait for a while. But by the time the church patio was empty, I was debating with myself if I should stay there or walk myself home. I saw a car driving through a couple of times. Then, the driver asks me if he could drive me home. At that time, I decided it was time to take a risk and go home.

When my grandmother arrived and did not see me, her nerves took over. She walked the mile and a half between the church and our house in record time. I was there, still explaining to my grandpa why I did not wait. My grandma hugs and kisses me. Then she yells at me, asking what I was thinking.

My grandpa asks her to liste and understand my point of view. Later, I explained what happened. After that, he said to granma the following. “We educate her well. We teach her to trust her instincts. To observe around and use what she sees to adapt to each situation and learn. You have been walking her all these years. It was about time to let her do it on her own. We have to trust that she learned.

If you only trust your people with a competency you think they have, you’ll never give them the opportunity to show you something extraordinary.” Bob Chapman

More learnings

Fast forward many years, and now I am in my first full-time job. I was the team leader of a six people group with no idea of what to do. My father had more than twenty years of experience at the time. He told me the following. “This is not easy, but always remember to treat people the same way you like to be treated. Never ask your team to do something you are not willing to do yourself.”.

Treat people the same way you like to be treated, always has been my creed as a supervisor. But, the bosses I had during the first few years teach me to trust but verify. So that was what I did for many years. I was not respecting my creed. I was troubled with doubts about how to deal with trust issues in the workplace. I asked my lean coach how do I build trust?

He made me remember that the most important thing on our journey was the people, not the tools.  Talking with him, I recalled the faces of all the people we help to learn new skills and do new jobs they never thought they could. I easily remember their happy faces for accomplishing something new and feeling trusted. On the other hand, I have to think long and hard to remember the success we had with process improvements and costs reduction.   

That day, after the conversation with my coach, I remembered the words of my grandpa and my father. I realized that I have to trust my people in the same way my grandpa trusted me.  That was part of treating my team the same way I like to be treated.

Trust and relationships

The need for being trusting and trustworthy is a critical concept for healthy relationships.  Values like respect, integrity, and kindness only have meaning if you show them regardless of who has not shown them to you yet.  I think it is like a smile.  When you smile first, chances are the other person will smile too.  Even if he or she doesn’t smile the first few times, eventually they will.  As leaders, we need to trust our ability to explore new solutions, learn new tools, build self-discipline, and teach our team.  We also need to learn how to trust that they will do the right thing and that if they need help, they will ask for it.   After all, it feels so great to feel trusted!

How do you show respect to your team?

Show respect

Respect in the workplace

Three characteristics of workplaces with toxic environments are disrespect, ineffective communication, and lack of growth.  Those things are the contrary of what lean promotes.   The heart of the Lean system is the people.  Continuous improvement is not about tools, it is about people.   In a successful continuous improvement culture, leadership trusts the team to solve their problems, and that requires much more than training.  

Showing respect to your team

The best way to feel motivated and good about their jobs is to feel leadership’s respect and trust.  Unfortunately, not everybody treats their peers with respect, not in the workplace, not in the street, or in the supermarket.  Considering the turmoil we are living in these days between the pandemic and the civil unrest for the double standard in our society, it is worth to list basic ways to show respect.


Show Respect!

Reflections

Leaders and citizens, we all need to learn how to listen more and talk less and practice compassion.  We need to hold one another accountable, be consistent with our beliefs, driving out fear of speaking up, and trying to do things better.  The workplace is not an isolated island, what happens in our society affect it, and vice versa.  Perhaps, the lean pillar of respect the people can help us to go through these challenging times inside and out of the workplace.  As I learned from Bob Chapman’s TrulyHumanLeadership blog, “To get trust, you have to freely give it.”