The Flow of Life and Leadership
Photo Credit raramsey.com
The workplace is increasingly becoming an extension of who we are within our social selves. The weaving of personal and professional lives is creating a different need at the leadership level. Mindfulness and emotional intelligence are being promoted because a vacuum now exists as team members seek personal satisfaction within their professional lives. Don’t confuse this with job satisfaction. This merging of personal and professional life is a different agenda beyond mere happy environments. The new professionals are merging these two paradigms into a cohesive existence and extension of their well being.
A group that has understood this principle for some time is the symphony. The person, skill and the instrument must merge with many others under the leadership of a maestro in a single sound. A challenging leadership position but when well lead, the sound is like no other.
Symphony's practice under the leadership of a maestro who can organize the rhythm of each skill into beautiful music. When we look at the individual instrument player the skill is present and in most cases the skill is excellent. But skill alone is not enough to engage in the flow of presentation.
I began to understand the concept of joining skills into clear choices of action that achieved a purpose, when i found myself as owner of a business and the accidental leader. I began to understand the Maestro’s role in rendering an engaging experience. The auditions and skill collections having filled the seats was the easy part.
Directing in such a way that 20-30-40 people can ply their unique skills together so that when heard,its harmonious, is the hard part. A maestro has to create a flow of thought and then get everyone to see and feel the flow. This is half the battle, now he/she must get the flow timed.
Entrepreneurs, leaders all have the task of the maestro. Unlike the maestro there is no external instrument to show us skill, thoughts and flow. We must determine the flow from clues presented through communications.
We have the choice to force the flow into a masterpiece of our design or determine the flow of the team and harness this natural flow.
The ebb and flow of leadership challenges the fixed mind. The flow of any endeavor is seeking its natural state. The leader is looking to harness that state and focus it on the purpose or goal.
What is the flow in practical terms. When more than one person is engaged in an endeavor there exists two states of flow. The purpose or goal and the needs of the team members to be satisfied within the purpose. I know many leaders who state that this latter statement is assumed because of the employment relationship.
Although the employment relationship would seem to offer up this condition of satisfaction it has been proven that employees who are satisfied with their pay seek a enriching rewarding experience within their employment. Recent posts by Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee indicate that the DiSC personality profiling system shows us that this enrichment is unique across individuals.
Leaders recognize the instruments of success and the needs of each player to experience their own success.
The flow of purpose coupled with our team members need for job/life satisfaction is the leaders orchestra that requires a maestro. The fixed mind would focus solely on the purpose or goal. Omitting the needs of the team member from gaining their own satisfaction from within the created focus. This establishes the challenges of fighting the ebb and flow of the natural flow of the team.
This may appear on the surface as softness in leadership. Leadership is about organizing folks into a great team through empowering each member to find their success within the larger success. Some members can't find this ebb and flow and may not fit the music the leader is playing. These folks need to be released to find the music where they can extract their success. This view of leadership is just that, a view. Its nether soft or hard. But rather a methodology of seeking the natural ebb and flow of team members.
Each team member, through their communications, are expressing what they need to find satisfaction in the team they have chosen to participate. The ability to listen, like the maestro, to the team member and discover their needs is one of the traits of great leaders. (This is not acceptance of the team members needs but rather an evaluation of whether the purpose or goal can be aligned.)
A few considerations as leaders:
- Personal success or dopamine release to a job well done within the purpose.
- Team support within the personal success (Oxytocin) Trust and relevance.
- Stability that is only provided when all emotions focus on the goal or purpose. Stability is usually only challenged when the emotions are targeted at an individual.
- Team members need to know their leader recognize their concerns within forward motion and challenging times. Verbalizing these concerns publicly can remove the stability issues.
The needs of some team members are not within the goal paradigm. These members require a release from a paradigm they can not flourish personally. (Dont mistake a personally challenged team member with issues outside the company here. We all go through challenges outside of work and these are treated differently.)
Surfing natural energy is a lot easier than having to create your own energy to surf upon.