How Do People Feel About Working With You?
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Be A Successful, Inspirational Role Model

The degree to which you will enjoy sustainable success in the workplace, with people aspiring to be like you, is influenced largely by how people feel about working with you. All of us can achieve this if we choose and commit to doing so.

Bear with me and take a moment to do the following quick exercise: Close your eyes and think of a clear memory, from a long time ago, one that you can still recall vividly. How did you feel at the time? Lasting clear memories are attached to feelings, both positive and negative.

It is then for you to decide how you want your colleagues to think of you and how they remember working with you. For this to be positive, all you have to do is have the courage to ask them for feedback on how they feel about working with you and to have the insight and commitment to adjust positively and constructively to this feedback. Remember, giving this kind of honest feedback is difficult, and to be successful you need to help colleagues to do so, and to sincerely value their courage. This will encourage them to follow suit.

To be able to do this requires a holistic approach and an understanding of a functional classification of capability. I use the model below, which has been described in a previous article:

capabilities

To recap briefly. Fundamental capabilities are the communication, relational and emotional capabilities that enable us to function as competent, decent human beings to work with. Professional and technical capabilities are those that enable one to perform professional (for example, accounting functions) and technical roles (for example, engineering functions) as well as management roles (for example, selection skills and Performance Management). Performance capabilities enable us to take appropriate action as required by the situation (for example, problem-solving and decision-making). Leadership capabilities are those that enable one to lead others, to be led and lead oneself (this involves having a clear purpose and a strong moral compass).

Essentially, you will need to address the following 4 questions:

1. What Do You Need To Be Able To Do For Colleagues To Feel You Are A Good Person To Work With?

To achieve this, you would need to be able to build sound relationships with those you work with, to communicate with them appropriately and effectively, and to be a healthy, well-balanced (emotionally, mentally and physically) person to be around.

In your role, how will you do this? This is all about understanding, developing and applying your fundamental capabilities.

2. What Do You Need To Be Able To Do For Colleagues To Feel That You Are Credible And Inspire Confidence?

To achieve this, you would need to be able to demonstrate the necessary technical/professional/managerial/supervisory knowledge and skills relevant to your job. In your role, how will you do this?

This aspect would also include the following question: What do you need to be able to do to give those around you a sense of assurance that you understand and comply with relevant regulations/standards so that the company is not put at risk?

To achieve this, you will be able to demonstrate knowledge of relevant regulations and industry/professional/technical standards and that you have systems in place to ensure that you meet these standards so that the company is not compromised or put at risk.

In your role, how will you do this? This is all about understanding, developing and applying the required technical, professional or role-related capabilities (including supervisory, management and regulatory).

3. What Do You Need To Do For Colleagues To Feel That You Inspire A Sense Of Optimism That You Will Mostly Achieve What You Set Out To Do Or Commit To Doing?

To achieve this, you would need to be able to demonstrate the level of performance capabilities relevant to your role. These are the action capabilities that show you are proactive, can solve problems, make the right decisions timeously and can plan and organize your work so that you meet deadlines and achieve objectives/goals timeously.

In your role, how will you do this? This is all about understanding, developing and applying the relevant performance capabilities.

4. What Do You Need To Be Able To Do To Demonstrate Personal Leadership Capabilities So That Colleagues Feel That You Have Clear Purpose And Abide By Universally Sound Principles And Ethics And That Working With You Somehow Feels Right?

To achieve this, you would need to be able to demonstrate that you are clear about your role and your team’s role as well as the contribution that you make, individually and collectively, to the organization’s purpose. You would also be able to list the principles/ethics that your team has identified as being key to you as a group as well as the behavioral anchors that exemplify such in behavioral terms. Further, you will be able to demonstrate that you are confident to challenge those around you when they do not uphold these ethics/principles.

In your role, how will you do this? This all about understanding, developing and applying your personal leadership capabilities.

In Summary

How people feel about working with you will give you very direct insight into your perceived capabilities, as well as where you need to develop in order to become more effective in your role. Essentially, you are asking those around you to participate in your Learning and Development journey. Done properly, it will make you a great person to work with as well as an inspirational role model. Interestingly, this process can be systemized, as a personal development module/process, into your organization's LMS. We should all be doing this.

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