Why You Need to Lead to Inspire
According to a survey conducted by Bain Research, Inspired employees are more than twice as productive as satisfied employees.
For many leaders they ask how to motivate their team. A better question would be, how do they inspire their teams.
When we partner with organisations to develop their leaders, we work across three pillars. When the self-aware leader and the team-aware leaders combine, we have leaders who are looking to inspire. Here's what I think about leading to Inspire, and why you should look at ways you can inspire your people.
Benefits of Inspirational Leadership The quality of the leadership within your organisation is one of the main factors that will determine your success. But the success of your organisation is just one of the many benefits of inspirational leadership. And when it comes to your people, it’s almost one of the least important. So, what are the benefits of inspirational leadership?
Empower Others Inspirational leaders empower their team. They give them the path and process to embrace passion in their work and to envision goals that support that passion. And then they work with them to create an action plan so they can better reach their goals. Inspirational leaders invest in their team. They allocate time and resources to develop the talents of those around them and are happy to mentor (and help find mentors) as well. Sometimes this means reaching out to each employee in order to understand what’s needed to bring out their best in them, and sometimes it’s about being open to those conversations in a more informal way. However, inspirational leaders understand that they need to spend time with each employee to truly understand what they need in order to make their work life better and advance their career. A truly inspirational leader understands that they will thrive best by helping those around them thrive, too.
Retention When a leader spends time engaging with their employees and understanding their needs, this individual attention creates a strong, professional bond between them. This bond is an excellent way to reduce employee turnover and increase employee retention. From an organisational point of view, strong retention is a benefit because it’s costly to replace and train employees. However, from a leader’s point of view, it’s a benefit because having a stable team enables you to have a greater deal of control and a higher capacity to achieve your vision and overarching goals.
Meeting goals Both retention and a feeling of empowerment help teams to better meet and even exceed their goals. This is because a team that stays together is stronger than one that has to deal with constant upheaval. And when a team is empowered, they’re better able to make and take decisions for the good of the team and the entire organisation. Above and beyond these two benefits, inspirational leaders are also better able to help their teams (and therefore themselves) to meet ambitious goals. By aligning their work with the values of their team, they can encourage others to take on more than they might otherwise believe they can. And the leader’s constant support helps the entire team to meet and accomplish those goals consistently.
Increased engagement This ongoing support and encouragement, the innate ability to value, praise and reward and the ability to reach out and listen to their teams, means that inspirational leaders have high engagement with their teams and, even better, their teams are highly engaged. When you have high engagement with your team you are able to communicate a clear sense of purpose and the continued appreciation of each individual and the value they bring to the team as a whole. When your team is highly engaged, they’re committed to the team and the organisation, and they’re more willing to take action based on this purpose–action that will be to the benefit of the organisation as a whole.
Committed employees Committed employees are a vital part of any organisation. Just as being firmly committed to any relationship brings value to that relationship, when your team is firmly committed to your organisation, they bring added value to that organisation. This comes in the form of determination to succeed, high productivity and an awareness and desire to produce high-quality work. In addition, committed employees show less absenteeism and lower turnover. Inspirational leaders inspire. And they do this by modelling the actions they want to see in their employees and team members, including a strong work ethic and a high level of commitment.
Growth An inspirational leader is constantly involved with the growth of the company and the ongoing development of employees. This puts them in good position to understand what is happening, and how to meet these challenges within the microcosm of their own team. On the other hand, when a leader is not intimately involved in the growth of the company, they can find themselves struggling to manage and inspire their team when the company does begin to grow. Company growth, particularly rapid growth, puts pressure on the leader and the team. If you are practicing the elements that create an inspirational leader, you’ll also already have in place the elements that will help you manage your team during this time of change. These are things like channelling good company culture, recognising and rewarding your team for jobs well done, keeping communication open and easy and modelling the behaviours and actions you expect from your team. Each of these will help you and your team embrace, and even leverage, growth and change for the benefit of everyone involved. As an inspirational leader you have all the skills and elements you need to make the process of growing an easier and more beneficial experience for all your employees.