As Chief Relationship Officer for CEO Connection I have the privilege and pleasure of participating in the CEO Boot Camps we hold six times per year. At the most recent event in New York City, the conversation at one point turned to the question, “How do you get the truth from your people?”
You see, one of our member CEOs had commented that the day prior he’d received very bad news from an employee which he should have received much sooner. His quote, “No one likes surprises, especially Chief Executives.”
So how do you get the truth from your people? Thoughts shared by the CEOs during the conversation included:
- You have to give your employees permission, through words and actions, to tell you the honest truth.
- You must give people permission to make mistakes and have a conversation with you about it.
- Watch how you respond to what an employee tells you when it’s not what you want to hear. That sets the tone for everything.
- Be clear with your teams about how important it is to share bad news in a timely manner, and how this helps minimize “damage.”
- Reward people who take a risk, even if they fail. If you can’t bring yourself to do this, then the truth is you are the impediment.
- Make it clear that you don’t have all the answers either.
- Be tough on the issues but not on the people.
- Let go of team members who are resistant to your vision, to change, or to your priorities. They will hold back the company. The rest of the team will see this as a sign of your truthful commitment to what you say is important. This is where aligning actions and words becomes critical.
My Perspective on Truth:
I believe, as a leader, it starts with showing up in your leadership role as your True Self. I realize many of you may roll your eyes at that, but I believe Truth starts within us.
If, as you step into your leadership role each morning, you morph into someone else or begin acting in a way you believe you need to act in order to be successful, then you’re not being true to yourself. If you are not even going to honor yourself with the truth, why should anyone else?
But by honoring who you are in every moment, and by showing up to work fully-expressed as your True Self – vulnerabilities, faults and all – you begin in truth. I don’t believe this makes you weak, I believe it makes you strong. I believe it’s empowering. I believe it makes you trustworthy and engenders honesty from others. I believe it empowers great success.
What do you believe?
Are you an introvert looking to use your introversion to your advantage in business & leadership or an extrovert interested in leading introverts more effectively? I wrote this eBook for you…
“The Introvert’s Guide to Success in Business and Leadership” eBook is NOW Available! Now an Amazon Best Seller & Hot New Release, Featured on Huffington Post, and the inspiration behind my Harvard Business Review article!
Click here to DOWNLOAD in PDF format. Thank you!
Being an introvert is truly an advantage in business and leadership if you know how to leverage it, and if you remain true to yourself.
Photo of The Mouth of Truth by Shadowgate.