February 7, 2011

What do people want? (Entrepreneurs as Leaders)

To get your week started off well, consider this age-old question:

What do people want?

In this case, "people" refers to "employees" or the even more objectionable terms "subordinates" or "followers".  (I prefer "team members" or "associates" when referring to the people in the entrepreneurial organization.)

Without further delay, the answer to the question:

Dr Ludi Beukman, HR development specialist at Softline VIP which is part of Sage Group plc, says that managers simply cannot ignore the importance of effective leadership in facing the challenges of a fast and ever-changing business environment. 

  1. People want to feel good about themselves and the work they do. This means that they have a need for finding meaning in their work through deriving a sense of personal identity from doing what they do and doing it well.
  2. People want to be successful. They do their best when they have the experience of making a valuable contribution to the organisation. They want to enjoy a sense of control over their work. This is gained through the incorporation of their ideas and feelings into the design and procedures governing the work they do and when they feel responsible for accomplishing the objectives of the organisation.
  3. People do their best when they are allowed to collaborate. They are willing to show extra effort when their own needs and objectives are met by achieving those of the organisation and when it is done through problem-solving processes where all contribute to and participate in generating solutions.
  4. People do not want to make mistakes. Yet, they do make mistakes. These should always be regarded as part of the developmental and learning process.
  5. People can and want to do what needs to be done… IF their leaders create the organisational conditions for them to do so. Subordinates inherently have both the willingness and potential to be empowered to do their work with competence and pride.
  6. All people have the inherent potential to be creative. The leader’s role in improving performance is to eliminate the unnecessary interferences so that followers’ potential can be optimally unleashed.
The link to the entire article is here.