More from my e-book, Leadership for New Managers: Book Two. Yesterday I was talking about core values. Most books on leadership tell the reader what values they should have to be an effective leader. They fail to mention what values leaders need to know about in the workplace. I touch on those in my e-book.
Respect means treating people as they should be treated. Respect as a core value can be difficult to manage. Many conflicts can arise over the perceived disrespect between associates. Some organizations adopt the expression, “Treat others as you would have them treat you.” in other words, the Golden Rule. However, that does not quite cover respect since it leaves open the option of ignoring others. A better definition is that respect is showing regard and appreciation of
The best way a leader/manager can show respect is to say, “Thank you.” So often, I hear managers say that they do not have to say thank you because an associate’s wages or salary is enough. It is not! Organizations pay associates for the work they do. Leaders say thank you for doing that work well, for meeting goals, and for contributing to the organization. I wrote about saying thank you in Leadership for New Managers. It is worth reading and the e-book is free. Download it at http://smashwords.com/b/155031. Thank you is a powerful way to show respect.
d. Religious Beliefs
Many people have a religious core value or belief. For some people, it is paramount to other values. Leader/managers that ignore this core value run the risk of offending an associate-even unintentionally. Many organizations in this country down play religion in the workplace, but it does exist. Associates do not leave their values at home every day when they go to work. Excellent leader/managers recognize this and try to work with it.
In Germany, I had a soldier who had a strong faith. His religion worshiped on Saturday, not Sunday. Usually, we had Sundays off but frequently worked on Saturdays. I was able to arrange his schedule so that he worked on Sundays, not Saturdays. He became a good soldier because of it.
I think the Army and many organizations have discovered that making some accommodations when possible is good for morale. That includes dress codes (for turbans, beards, and headdress), providing a place to worship (prayer room, mediation room) and special needs (special food, prayer time, teatime).
e. Money, Financial Rewards, Financial Security
Money can be a core value. Money is not necessarily a negative value. It can mean either financial security, or greed. Many leader/managers over estimate the motivational influence of money (financial reward). They may think, for example, that all associates want overtime, pay increases, and bonuses. Financial security is a fundamental requirement in the hierarchy of needs. If that need is not satisfied, employees will work two jobs, seek overtime, and work holidays. Usually, the significant other does too. If they have children, it is not unusual for the two to work different shifts to avoid daycare or babysitting.
Once associates achieve financial security, they are not always as eager to earn more money. They may not want more overtime, a promotion, or bonus. Most associates do not seek more responsibility. They are happy to put in 40 hours of honest work for a paycheck to cover their bills, watch cable TV, and enjoy an occasional vacation. Ambitious associates are easy to identify; they go to night school, they are eager to learn new skills, they actually seek more responsibility, they may even have a side business. Money or power may motivate them more.
Leader/managers need to understand money as a core value and not assume it is a value for all of
their associates. Leaders can usually identify associates who have money as a core value. If those associates also have a core value of honesty, then things like overtime can be a motivator. However, if an associate with a core value of money does not also have a core value of honesty, they will steal from the organization, from other associates, or from the time clock. Leaders should
terminated dishonest associates who value money.