“In the past a leader was a boss. Today’s leaders must be partners with their people. They no longer can lead solely based on positional power.” Ken Blanchard
I continue to think about the concept of Employees as Partners set forth in the “Power of 2” by Rodd Wagner & Gale Muller. Once again, I strongly suggest this book for any Manager who expects to lead a successful operation in 2010 and beyond. Why? Because the only way Employers can engage the people who work for them, after what little trust there was between Employees and Employers was destroyed by the downsizing, furloughs, pay reductions and lack of appreciation (how many times have Employees heard the nauseating phrase “Quite complaining. You’re lucky you have a job!”?) that accompanied the economic downturn of 2008 – 2009, is to stop treating people who work in the Company as Employees! “Employees” in the Knowledge Economy is an outdated concept – a holdover form the Command & Control Industrial Age. The Partnership Relationship is the only relationship that allows a Company to be successful in the WorkQuake™ of the Knowledge Economy.
In last week’s Bottom Line I outlined the undisputed advantages of Employees as Partners. But the biggest advantage of working with Partners and not Employees is that Employees Do the Work While Partners Care About the Work! That is the game changer in a nutshell.
But how do you create a Powerful Partnership? By following the 8 elements set forth in “Power of 2” and then a 9th essential element. The 9 elements are:
1. Complementary Strengths: Everyone has weaknesses! Employees have strengths that can complement a manager’s weaknesses. Don’t be afraid to admit your weaknesses and compensate for those weaknesses with the strengths of your Work Partners.
2. Common Mission: Establish the same Agenda for you and your Work Partners. By aligning everyone with the same Goal it will be achieved.
3. Fairness: No one can get the short end of the stick if the Partnership is to succeed. Sharing the good fairly making accepting the sacrifices necessary to reach the good acceptable.
4. Trust: Partnerships succeed only when the Partners trust each other to get the job done and protect each others back.
5. Acceptance: Accepting and celebrating the fact that each Partner is different is a key to a successful Partnership.
6. Forgiveness: Partners make mistakes. You make mistakes. Failure to forgive those mistakes = a failed Partnership.
7. Communicating: No one wants or can be a mind reader! Constant and meaningful communication is necessary to prevent misunderstandings and to generate an efficient work process between Partners.
8. Unselfishness: When you are as concerned with seeing your Partners succeed as you are with your own success, the Partnership will be successful.
- The 9th element is: Don’t waste your Time, Energy & Resources on Employees who do not deserve or want to be your Partners! “The Others” – those Employees who should have been fired yesterday! – will never be good Partners!
The Bottom Line: It may not be easy to realize that organizational success is dependent on changing the managerial mindset from “I’m the Boss!” to “We’re Partners”, but that is the requirement for continued success in the Knowledge Economy.
Question: Are you ready to be successful with your Work Partners?
Paul Glover, President Go to www.trainingeverydayleaders.com for more information about how to Unleash the Power of Workplace Partnerships in the Time of the WorkQuake™ or follow me daily at twitter.com/glovergroup.