We talk regularly about leadership and how building relationships with your team is critical to the success of your organization. Today, we are going to talk about being a patient leader.
I have to say that being patient isn’t one of my virtues. I have gotten better at it, especially after I had my kids. It’s true that kids teach you patience. Simply because you love them so much, you are willing to take your time to let them solve the problem, or figure out the situation. And I will tell you that eventually, you will look to your team and think of them as your family. Not necessarily like your kids, but people you care about and therefore are willing to give them the time it takes for them to solve the problem or learn the best pathway.
Given the craziness around us that continues on in our world, it’s critically important to show some extra patience. Remember to display patience not just in relationship interactions, but also in task-oriented interactions.
Do things like have those private, one on one discussions about performance. This builds the relationship with the direct report and with your total team, by maintaining the trust you have built with each of them. While at the same time, it allows you to give task-oriented feedback that moves the business forward.
You have to display patience in both areas of your leadership. If you are embarrassing your team in front of each other, you are not showing the patience you need to display on the relationship side.
If you are sending new directions and asking every hour, you aren’t showing patience on the task-oriented side of your leadership.
You have to maintain the balance. The best way to do that is to figure out which situations cause you to lose your patience. Once you identify those, think about the way you will handle those situations when they occur. The point here is that you will decide the best course of action when you aren’t frustrated or angry. Then, when you get into a situation where your patience is running thin, you already have a solid plan to execute because you created it before you got into the situation.