Why is communication so important in leadership?
Let's look at a domestic example.
I'm married and have 3 children. I work 40 hours a week and am searching for opportunities for new streams of income.
In both of these areas I want to be a leader. I want to have a family life built on Trust so that my wife, children, and I Respect each other. At work, I want to not only do my job well, but help my team feel successful and accomplished (and on a great day--Inspired!) At the same time, I am looking for opportunities to increase my income by using leadership skills like vision planning, cost/value analysis, and networking.
Now in order to accomplish being a leader in all of these areas, I set goals for myself. One of the main focuses is in time management. How will I intentionally spend my time in order to accomplish the work I want to do today. Good goal, right? Right!
So usually I get up before my wife and children so I have time to work on my goal setting, planning, and spend some time networking for the day. Today, Elisabeth was up feeding the baby so I had the chance to ask her how she wanted to spend her day. She gave me some great feedback about chores she wanted to accomplish.
Did I mention that we have 3 kids? All at home--under the age of 5? Chores are not a simple task and she wanted 3 done. Half a sink of Dishes cleaned, 2 loads of Laundry folded and put away, and if time get the living room picked up.
So while, I had a plan of what and how I wanted to accomplish things for work today when I went to bed last night, now I saw that my team member (my wife) had a difficult set of tasks ahead of her. That's a leadership lightbulb moment. I know she is capable of completing those 3 tasks in a day. However, there are also the variables of 3 children. So as a leader I ask myself, how can I help her accomplish those goals?
I went out and surveyed the situation and found the little things I could do to help. She wants to wash dishes. I see that there is still water sitting in the sink from last night and the previously clean dishes are sitting in the drainer. To set her up for success I drained the old water, put away the dishes already washed, and gathered miscellaneous dishes from around the house and put them by the other dishes waiting to be washed. Part of that process even contributed to picking up the living room--which I saw was another easy win. If I could have that last lingering task of "picking up the living room" completed before she woke up, she wouldn't have that lingering question all day "Will I get to pick-up the living room?" It will already be done. Being greeted by a clean room is empowering for her.
So now I anticipate she will be able to focus on the tasks of washing the dishes, and finishing the laundry. Will she be successful? I don't know for certain. But, I believe that I have helped set her up for success.
That's the power of communication. When I know what my team wants to accomplish, I can help them succeed.
The same principle works the other way. When Leadership communicates the goals, the changes, and--most importantly--the expected outcome (the "Why we're doing this") then teams are empowered to find how they can best contribute to the goals at hand.
Have a good day today. Go be a leader.