In this episode of Your Practice Ain’t Perfect we’re talking about Building Authentic Relationships With Employees.
Joe Mull, M.Ed is a practice manager leadership trainer and keynote speaker who works with healthcare organizations that want their practice leaders to engage, inspire, and succeed. As an expert in employee engagement and healthcare leadership development, Joe gives physicians and managers the skills and tools they need to engineer teams that work hard, get along, and wow patients. After more than a decade in healthcare, Joe knows that when leaders develop skills related to leadership, communication, and teambuilding, they can stop putting fires out every day and prevent them from sparking in the first place. Bring Joe in to keynote your conference, design and facilitate a retreat, or beef up your practice leader training. For more info or to book Joe now visit www.joemull.com.
“After keynoting a conference recently, a practice manager told me about her boss’s efforts to build relationships on her team. She said 'My boss, who spends most of her time in her office, keeps a candy dish on her desk. If anyone reaches for a piece of candy while they’re in there she says “hold on, if you want candy, you have to tell me one thing about yourself.'" At all other times, this manager told me, her supervisor is aloof and distant.
OK, I get it, this leader is trying. But relationship building takes time, goes both ways, and isn’t transactional. Candy coercion alone isn’t going to build the kinds of sophisticated relationships that lead to engaged teams. That’s why, in this episode of Your Practice Ain’t Perfect, I’m giving you simple but powerful ways to build authentic relationships with your employees. Here we go.…
I’m starting out today with a stat that you’ve probably heard before. 75% of people who leave a job indicate their boss is part or all of the reason why. In fact, the relationship between supervisor and employee is the single most influential factor in employee engagement. People don’t quit their jobs. They quit their bosses.
When leaders care about the person inside the employee … when they deploy time and effort to build real relationships ripe with familiarity, understanding, care, and connection, employees stay longer and try harder. To build authentic relationships with employees, then, you have to connect with them beyond the tasks and responsibilities of their job. Here’s how:
First: Learn about who they are outside of work. Ask about their weekends, their vacations, their kids. Do this often and remember the details of those conversations. Refer back to them, follow-up, and keep the small talk going wherever possible. And don’t just pay it lip service. Be genuinely interested in that stuff.
Second: Find common ground. Figure out the topics you can bond over. If you both have kids, strike up a conversation about t-ball schedules, back-to-school clothes shopping, or holiday gift giving. If you share a mutual interest in fitness, invite them to run in a 5k with you or join your Crossfit club. What’s important here is to be willing to share some info about your own hobbies and happenings, so tell others about your weekends, vacations, and families.
Third: Care and help when life happens. Look, pets die, relationships end, and kids get sick. And when those things happen it’s unrealistic to expect employees to simply check that stuff at the door and be at their best, regardless. So let people duck out early or take a sick day to handle life when it happens. If your employee’s hot water tank explodes, flooding her basement, and you immediately step up and cover for her, she’ll remember that. This kind of genuine caring and support is where loyalty and effort come from.
So there you have it … you’ll build authentic relationships with employees when you Learn about who they are outside of work, find common ground, and care and help when life happens. There are lots of other ways to build authentic relationships with employees, many of which are outlined in my book Cure for the Common Leader: What Physicians & Managers Must Do to Engage & Inspire Healthcare Teams, which is available on Amazon. In the meantime, let me know how YOU build authentic relationships by leaving a comment in the box below. And don’t forget to like and share this video if you found it useful.
If you want more leadership tips and tricks for healthcare professionals be sure to visit my website www.joemull.com and signup for my Help for Healthcare Leaders newsletter. See you next time!”
Joe Mull- Speaker, Author, Trainer