In the world of leadership it just makes sense that you would be out there glad handing, cheer-leading and relentlessly challenging those who serve your business. I have long held the belief that organizations exist to serve the people that serve it. Thus, it is the leaders calling to serve. And, baked into that calling is the need to know your people.
We have all been there, “Hey Fred, now what is that porters name again?,” “And, what is the assistant manager’s name?” I’ve done it myself more than once. Not only is that embarrassing, it just plain wrong. No a fact I am proud of for sure. Can we all agree that people want to feel like and more importantly know that they are part of something bigger than themselves. They want purpose, they want mission, they want values that are in alignment with their own. They want to be dignified. And, they want you to know their name and be genuinely interested in them.
Multifamily Management by Wondering Around
MBWA was made famous by Tom Peters and Bob Waterman when they researched and wrote about it in the book, In Search of Excellence. The practice was a cornerstone of Hewlett Packard’s business model. [A practice they seem to have forgotten; as of late at least.] The thought was that the most unadulterated pulse of your business comes from the front lines. The forward facing people that serve the people that participate with your goods and services. They are the ones that give you the best sense of what is and what should be as it relates to running a profitable business.
How do we do that?
First, we show up. Go ahead, make an appointment with your front line people today. Make two or three and stick to them.
Next, we ask probing questions. Get that list together ahead of time. But make sure you leave the environment open for fluid conversation.
And then, we listen! There is a reason you have two ear and one mouth. Listen twice as much as you talk and you are guaranteed to learn a lot about your people and your business.
That’s it. Simple as it sounds it is likely the most overlooked and underutilized piece of our business. We get so caught up in the deal, in the reporting, in the fire drill that we put the site visit off. We assume the people will understand. They get that we are in growth mode. They get that we are busy. They get it. It’s all good. Truth be know you rob them of their dignity, their pride and their wherewithal.
Your making several meaningful front-line appointments for next week contributor,