Leadership lessons can come free of charge at anytime. The bowerbird’s behaviour gives us food for thought about attracting and keeping good people, collaboration and building trust. Let me ask you: Are you a leader who is effective in attracting and keeping good people? Fighting for growth during the Covid-19 crisis requires inspiring leaders who develop and nurture effective teams in an engaged culture.
The Art Of Attraction Of The Bowerbird
My mother-in-law is quite ill. As I sat outside her ward window at Bright Hospital, I noticed a Bower Bird nest. The tell-tale sign was a wide array of blue items sitting in front of the nest. A male bird was using colourful items in an effort to attract a female mate. It happens every year and most of the time the female will keep choosing the same male again and again.
Although I didn’t hang around long enough to see if his quest was successful, it got me thinking about an important lesson in relationships; and how upgrading relationships quality improves leadership effectiveness.
Becoming a Person of Positive Influence
Good leaders know how to make themselves attractive. Someone worth following; Someone worth engaging with; And someone to trust.
Some leaders have no idea that this is an important quest in becoming a person of positive influence. So they miss an opportunity to continue attracting good people into their business, and keeping them, thus making their business stronger.
Here is a true story of a successful business leader: Over 20 years ago, Peter held a senior role in an agriculture business. He rolled up to a 3-day program I was conducting for 10 leaders in his organisation. As he said later, he felt the program was “going to be 3 days of his life wasted – days he will never get back”. This was his mindset prior to the program, then the experience changed his view for ever.
Above All Else Know Thyself
Peter went on to be CEO of several large agriculture businesses and continues to use Bridgeworks to align his leadership teams. The Bridgeworks process helped him to better understand himself and the influence (good and bad) he had on others. That discovery allowed Peter to be more effective as a leader and better engage others.
Since then, he continues to be one of my most loyal and committed clients. Like the Bowerbird, he now recognises the additional influence, impact, and eventually productivity gains, that come from making one more ‘attractive’ to be around. He still speaks with passion of what he learnt about himself during that program over 20 years ago.
Crossing Any Bridge
If people know you, they will invest time with you; if people like you, they will engage with you; and if people trust you, they will cross any bridge with you, no matter how difficult.
First, to start that journey, you need to be ‘attractive’ to others. So let’s start by reflecting on your behaviour affects attracting good people and keeping them. Consider these few questions:
First, are you a good listener?
Do you bring the best out in others?
And does the culture you build and encourage lead to innovation and productivity gains?
How well do you know yourself? And is it how others see you?
And do you regularly measure your effectiveness with those you lead?
Do people want to hang around you?
Will they go the extra mile for you? Why or why not?
Does your business attract good people?
These questions go deep into the foundations of Bridgeworks. Our leadership programs have changed many leaders’ effectiveness. Our highly interactive face to face and virtual online programs guide participants on the journey from discovery to greater leadership effectiveness.
If any of these questions hit a raw nerve for you, tell us your story.
Bowerbird image by JCBoone