The foundation of any successful business is the leadership, agreed? If this is true, which I believe it is, then the same is true of any unsuccessful business - the leadership is the downfall, agreed?
Why is it then, that most organizations fail to invest in the one thing that drives their business forward? All too often I have seen people placed into leadership positions and then left to get on with it. When money is tight, the first thing to go (if it exists in the first place) is the training budget. When the leadership team is not resourced to handle the challenges of an increasingly competitive world, there is no way that a sustainable operation can exist - fact!
Some of you reading this may disagree, and that is okay. However, if you do, I would ask you to dig deep, be honest, and ask why you feel that way?
- It may be that your organization is prepared to invest in the development of their most valuable resource - their people.
- It may be that your organization is living within it's comfort zone and not stretching, in which case the outward appearance may be that the leadership team is doing a good job.
- It may be that you are responsible for them and don't want to admit that you have a problem.
Whatever the reason, there us little doubt that this is an area that needs to be addressed IF organizations want to grow and flourish.
People leave leaders, not companies
Why do most employees leave their position? Granted, sometimes it is because they are not suited to it, they may also get a promotion, or they retire, but it is also widely accepted that, many times, people leave because of their leaders not because of the organization.
Employee engagement is a crucial factor in building a sustainable business. After all, the employees are the ones who interact with the customers, guests, or clients and as a result they directly impact the level of service that is provided. This service level is a major driver in attracting and retaining customers and therefore directly affects business results. When your employees are engaged in their work and the culture of the company it is more likely that they will be happy in their work and provide exceptional customer service. Everything begins with leadership. Achieving excellence from others begins by leading ourselves and therefore investment in leadership development is not an option, it is essential.
In my experience I have found that the most highly successful organizations have the following in place:
- A clearly defined set of values,
- A well communicated vision,
- A mission statement that is understood at all levels, and
- Their employees love working for them.
During my time with the Walt Disney Company in Orlando, I became fascinated by the legacy that Walt had left behind, and what impact this had on the entire organization. The culture of the company was built around the same principal that I have used successfully throughout my career - delivering exceptional customer service. It doesn't matter what business you are in, you always have a customer, and the cost of customer acquisition is a key indicator - just watch one episode of Shark Tank! When you treat your customers well they will have a higher propensity to return and to recommend you to others.
I have already shown how the employees directly impact the customer and, by proxy, the leadership is the influence for the employee. The level of employee engagement will never outperform the quality of the leadership and therefore, is the route of all problems. Empowering the employees to do the right thing is one way to increase their engagement but there is far more to sustainability and growth than that.
I created my company to help overcome these problems and we collaborate with ambitious organizations to develop leadership cultures through dynamic coaching, immersive workshops, and engaging seminars, creating a sustainable legacy of empowerment and excellence.
If you would like to know more about how we can help your organization reach peak performance and retain your top talent AND hard earned customers you can email me at [email protected] or visit my website, www.Chris-J-Baker.com, to download more information.