Snowflakes and Employees


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As I watched the snow falling yesterday I couldn’t help but notice the beauty of each individual snowflake. So intricate. So delicate. So inspiring. And each flake so different. As my mind wandered to leadership I discovered a connection to employees. Each employee possesses their own beauty. Their own intricacies. They are delicate in their own right. Working to inspire and make a difference for the people around them. And how each employee is in fact so different.

Often times leaders try a blanket, one size fits all approach when working with employees. Failing to see how different each employee is. Failing to recognize that each employee is motivated in different ways. Failing to understand how to communicate with each employee. Failing to recognizing the beauty of their diversity.

Employees need to be led, coached and approached differently. As leaders we need to meet them where they are at, not where we are at. We need to provide information, feedback and motivation to meet the individual needs of each employee. Employees bring unique experiences and perspectives to the work place. They bring different levels of knowledge. They learn differently, they listen differently and they care about different things. As a leader it is our job to discover what each individual employee needs to be successful. We must then use that information as we help lead them to success for and within themselves.

There are however, a few things that must be consistent across the board no matter what employee you are working with. Effective leaders consistently coach, train, recognize, reward and hold everyone accountable to the standards, goals and expectations for performance and within the organization. How you provide this information and the opportunities to do so will be different. Employees must first understand the standards, goals and expectations. It is then up to us as a leader to teach them, provide feedback, celebrate the success and ultimately hold them accountable. This is how you create an equitable work environment. Treating everyone with the same one size fits all approach doesn’t create equity, encourage engagement or recognize the individuals that make up our team.

Just as each falling snow flake is unique, I encourage you to remember the uniqueness that each employee brings to your organization. To achieve high levels of success we must capitalize on that uniqueness by treating each employee as an individual.

We would love to hear your thoughts. Should leaders treat all employees the same? How do you create equity in your organization or on your team?

Until then enjoy the snowflakes or the sunshine depending on where you are!

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Kelly Ketelboeter
Kelly is an experienced training professional with over 14 years of corporate classroom training both as an employee and consultant. She has managed and consulted over 75 clients nationwide and in Canada in the areas of customer service, relationship based selling and coaching/management.


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