- December 4, 2019
- Posted by: David Marshall
- Category: Leadership, Management
When you’re a leader, getting your staff to buy into your goals and overall vision is not just a transactional event. You don’t just offer them something in exchange for supporting you. It’s not their job to automatically buy into your vision. And you can’t just do it because you’re the boss.
That’s not leadership, it’s bullying. And if that’s the only way you can get your team to buy into your vision, you’re not actually cut out for management.
There are three good ways to get your team to buy into your goals, but they don’t start with the goals themselves. They start much earlier.
1. Make your team members feel heard
When new leaders start with a team, you pretty much start at the starting line with them. They respect your position and they’ll do what you ask because it’s their job. They don’t get a paycheck if they don’t do what’s required of them.
But if you want to move them off of 0 and get them emotionally involved in your plans, they have to feel like you listen to them. They need to know that you care about their concerns, their well-being, and their wants and desires.
Sure, this is a lot different from when I first started working, but this is the world we live in today. People want to know that their work matters and that they matter to their employers. If you can give them that — and you can just by listening and letting them express their own ideas — you’ll get that emotional loyalty you’ll need when you’re ready to launch a new campaign, create a new process, or even take on a major project for your department or company.
2. Give them input into your goals
Your people are probably better at their jobs than you are. Unless you came up through their ranks, doing the same work, they’re specialists who know more about their jobs than anyone else in the company. That means they know what it takes to actually get their work done.
And since your plans depend on them and their work, they will often know better how to meet your goals and expectations. Let them tell you what it will take to achieve and exceed them. You may find that with their input, you’ve set the bar too low or too high, and you can make the necessary adjustments before you finalize your plan.
3. Give them a sense of ownership
One thing successful leaders do is create a sense of “we’re in this together” and helping people feel like they’re a part of something bigger than they are. People who feel that sense of ownership tend to be more dedicated to a team’s mission, and work harder to see the mission is complete.
Help your team find their feeling of ownership in your new campaign or project. Since they’re the ones who will actually do the work, help them feel like it’s their campaign and their goals they’re working toward.
Getting buy-in from your team members or committee isn’t just a function of being a part of management. It means helping your team feel appreciated and heard before a new project begins. And once you launch, it means letting them give input as to how it’s finished and to give them a sense of ownership into the entire process. If you can do that, you’ll get more and better work out of them than if it were just a directive handed down from on high.
I’ve been a manufacturing executive, as well as a sales and marketing professional, for a few decades. Now I help companies turn around their own business. If you would like more information, please visit my website and connect with me on Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn.
Photo credit: PeakPX (Creative Commons 0, Public Domain)