Leadership Principle – Human Needs

There is a lady here that gets it. I’ve talked her blog before but, unfortunately, it is an internal blog so I cannot link to it. But she is one of the few here who gets it. She discusses the book “The Thin Book of Naming Elephants,” by Sue Annis Hammond and Andrea B. Mayfield. It’s been on my reading list for sometime and her review just bumped it to the top of the list.

The book ends with a discussion on David Cooperrider‘s theory of the three universal human needs which are:

  1. Have a voice and be heard
  2. Be viewed as essential to a group
  3. Be seen as unique and exceptional

The blog then goes on to quote the authors,

“We have found that when people in organizations become frustrated or cynical, it is always because the organization is not fully respectful of the three universal human needs…most organizations will tell you they practice these principals, but in reality they do not…You can make a difference by monitoring who you listen to and who you ignore and asking yourself why. What assumptions have you made about people or positions that cause you to listen or tune out?”

Hammond and Mayfield say you can make a difference by creating a more constructive culture by being curious about how every other person sees the world, respecting each person’s perspective of the world as unique and essential to the group’s success, and making sure every person has a chance to speak and be heard.

“…following those simple rules, that by ensuring all three of those universal human needs are met, you will be a successful leader. Organizations that work at meeting those needs will be more successful, too.”

As I said above, the lady writing the blog gets it. I firmly believe many of the negative attitudes are because these needs are not being met. The folks on the other side of my cube wall are still a little upset about be dis-invited from a meeting yesterday. The implication being they were not important enough to attend. It was to hear the concerns of certain (i.e. more important) individuals only.

Too many leaders don’t take these “soft” skills into consideration. People are more productive when they are treated as valued members of the team, that they make a difference and would be missed.

The thoughts here are not original but I see them as important enough to be on my list and shared with the world.

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