Is Hiring People You Like Important? Yes!
A leader recently asked me if I thought he made a mistake by building a whole new team, rather than bringing members of his previous team with him to a new role. I said, “No, but it is much harder.”
A leadership team is a collection of relationships. Ensuring those relationships work well and are made up of people you like and trust makes for a far more effective team. It’s why leaders moving into CEO positions often bring their most trusted people with them.
When that’s not possible, and you’re starting your leadership team from scratch, focusing more on the relationships rather than the technical skillsets is critical. It’s something few leaders do, however, because they may feel the relationships will happen naturally or the work is so pressing, it’s hard to slow down and focus on something that feels less productive. And work is easier to focus on than tough conversations or personal discussions.
But time spent building relationships and shared understanding of how we want to work, will pay dividends. The work will happen more effectively. And it will be more fun.
Leadership can be very lonely
Leaders need to make tough decisions. Working together on those decisions results in better outcomes. It increases communication, unearths new perspectives, and creates a sense of shared effort, understanding, and meaning. It helps the leader – and everyone else on the team – feel less isolated.
Trust is key in working together well. It allows for good healthy conflict, which also means better outcomes. Trust helps everyone feel comfortable sharing their honest opinions with each other, even if their views are unpopular. It enhances decisions, and makes the implementation more effective when everyone agrees on the decisions and works together to support and carry them out.
And the leader becomes less lonely. Work is more fun when you feel part of a team. Especially for the leader.
Trust breeds results – but it’s tough to build trust if you don’t like each other or at least have a good understanding and respect for each other. It’s why working on relationships is such a foundational part of our roles as leaders. And why good, strong, trusted relationships at work are so closely linked to the success in our jobs and happiness in our lives.