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sticks or carrots: what is your leadership style?

by Lindsay posted in small business ownership, customer service, management tips • Mar 10, 2015 11:07:00 AM

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carrots

We love carrots here at Little Nest!!  Not just the crunchy, bright orange variety.

Over the past few years we've had tons of discussions within our company about how to incentivize our teams to push forward with new ideas, strive for excellence, and overcome challenges.  Time and again, the conversation comes down to the choice of creating opportunities and positive rewards vs creating plans to deter unwanted outcomes.

For us, the debate really boils down to company culture and values... how do we as leaders want to fuel passion & performance without creating a culture of fear and negative competition?  As we face new hurdles and opportunities, we often regroup and ask ourselves how everyone can benefit from the different outcomes.  Once we have mapped the various possibilities, we coach our team members around the options that will create a win for everyone. This philosophy applies to customer service conundrums as well as internal company goals and challenges. 

When looking for an outcome, do you tend to develop incentives around what you want to have happen, or consequences around what you don't?!  If you haven't thought about this aspect of your business, or your own personal leadership style, take a little time this week to ponder it.  Ask yourself some tough questions like:

  • What are our company goals and how do we incentivise our teams around them?
  • Are we creating unity or factions?
  • Am I hiring people who are aligned with our culture and values?
  • How am I helping my team members to reach their own goals?
  • How am I helping my clients to reach their goals?
Time and again we've found that a positive outcome is easier to reach if you concentrate on the possibilities and positive aspects of a situation, instead of protecting yourself and your company from the negative.  Team members want to do a great job and customers want to be thrilled with their investment.  If you can show them how to reach their goals with a positive approach, everyone will find success. 
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