Your. Words. Matter. Always.
I spoke with a client today. The details of his situation are interesting, but not my point.
Here’s my point. When you are a leader, everything you say carries weight. You may have a great relationship with your people. I hope you do. You may even go out for a beer together now and then. That sounds like fun. And, you are NEVER ‘off the clock’ when talking about work.
Your words always matter.
Be sure your intention and your impact are aligned. Listen carefully for the response to your “funny/snarky/I’m not talking about you, I’m talking about others “comments. If you mess up, fix it.
This client is a star. Has been for years. Still can be. Unless he is consistently put in a box by a leader who thinks he is making a joke.
I know I am being vague.
Do you understand the power dynamics in your organization? Do you understand that you speak for the organization? Do you know that you have the power to lift up or slam down those who respect you? I’m telling you that you do.
My message is not intended to muzzle you, Leader. My message is to make you think.
So what can you do?
- Understand the power dynamics in your organization and where you fit.
- Know that as a leader, your words count. Use them to support, and coach, and provide specific feedback.
- Be clear on your intention when sharing information, and look for ways to assess your impact.
- Check in after a challenging conversation.
- Say you’re sorry when you screw up.