Leading with Kindness

How Good People Consistently Get Superior Results

 Leading with Kindness

Authors: William F. Baker, Michael O'Malley, Ph.D.
Pub Date: August 2008
Print Edition: $18.95
Print ISBN: 9780814439425
Page Count: 256
Format: Paper or Softback
e-Book ISBN: 9780814401750

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Goal Setting with Good Sense and Kind Leadership

A Few Tips and Reminders from Bill Baker

Expectations Matter…

- It doesn’t make sense to hold someone accountable, through reward or punishment, for objectives that are poorly defined or poorly communicated.

- Important goals to which people are committed have motivational force. That is, other than performing a directive function, “stretch” goals have the complementary advantage of energizing people to persistently work toward something they want to achieve.

- Setting goals is often mistaken as the end in itself. We all have established goals, believed they were important, and did nothing to meet them. That is because each day our goals compete with other distractions and priorities. It is easy to set goals and much harder to clear the way to attain them. That is where leadership and kindly reminders of what is most important and what must get done come in handy.

- Set goals in the context of thinking big. Too often, goals are grounded in the customary way of doing things in the industry—and there is little sense in expending substantial energy swatting flies. Some companies that find themselves in a comfortable niche are happy with the status quo. But employees don’t like to be associated with mediocrity. Leaders who have grander ambitions and ask for more from the workforce are inviting employees to participate in a bigger story than the one to which they are accustomed: that’s not a bad invitation!

- Make certain that individual goals do not impair group performance. Most companies temper the potentially detrimental effects of personal pursuits by giving greater weight to group goals in compensation plans.

- Avoid the trap of setting long-term goals without specifying intermediate sub-goals and celebrating incremental achievements. Effort should be self-reinforcing.

- Don’t lose sight of the many accomplishments that occur outside the formal goal-setting process. It is impossible to identify everything that will need to be done a year or more in advance. It is essential to recognize achievements that went beyond the call of duty.

Adapted from LEADING WITH KINDNESS: How Good People Consistently Get Superior Results by William F. Baker, Ph.D., and Michael O’Malley, Ph.D. (AMACOM 2008).

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